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March 22, 2013

MADIGAN: MULTIPLE CHARGES FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT AND CHILD PORNOGRAPHY IN OPERATION GLASS HOUSE ARREST IN MADISON COUNTY

Springfield — A Roxana man is jailed on $200,000 bond and charged with multiple counts of sexual assault and child pornography after his arrest as part of Operation Glass House, Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s initiative that targets the most active traffickers who download and trade child pornography online.

Brian K. Cooper, 26, is charged with predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, a Class X felony punishable by six to 30 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC), and aggravated criminal sexual abuse, a Class 2 felony punishable by three to seven years in the IDOC. Additional charges against Cooper include three counts of Class X child pornography and three counts of Class 1 child pornography. Cooper is being held in the Madison County Jail.

Madigan’s investigators joined Roxana Police and the U.S. Secret Service in conducting the search early Wednesday of Cooper’s residence in the 300 block of Rohm Place in Roxana. Evidence at the scene revealed computer files containing nearly 3,000 pictures and videos depicting alleged child pornography. Further investigation led to the charges of sexually assaulting a child. The Madison County State’s Attorney’s office filed the charges yesterday.

“Operation Glass House is focused on investigating and apprehending individuals who are actively downloading the most heinous child pornography and present the greatest risk of sexually assaulting children,” Madigan said. “In this case, our investigation led to a very dangerous person who is now facing charges of sexually assaulting a child, as well as engaging in child pornography.”

“The acts alleged in these charges represent some of the worst and darkest despicable acts that a person can commit,” said Madison County State’s Attorney Tom Gibbons. “Sexual assaults on children can cause deep and lasting emotional and physical scars that continue to traumatize victims long after the acts have ended. When those acts are recorded as child pornography, those children are re-victimized every time the recordings are viewed or transferred. For these reasons, it is imperative that we as a community do everything we can to prevent abuse and prosecute offenders when such horrible crimes happen.”

“This arrest by Roxana Police is the result of excellent cooperation with Attorney General Madigan’s office, State’s Attorney Gibbons and the Secret Service,” said Roxana Police Chief Jim Smith. “Our joint operation succeeded in locating a suspected child abuser and purveyor of pornography and should serve as a warning that law enforcement will act to protect our children and our community and we have the technological help to see what online child pornographers are doing behind closed doors.”

The public is reminded that the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty by a court of law.

This is the 39th arrest since Madigan launched Operation Glass House in August 2010 to investigate the most active and prolific child pornographers in Illinois. In the first year of Operation Glass House, Madigan’s investigations revealed a disturbing trend of offenders trading extremely violent videos of children being raped. As a result, Operation Glass House has focused on apprehending offenders who are seen trading and watching extremely violent videos involving children, including infants and toddlers.

Madigan’s office, with a grant from the Department of Justice, runs the Illinois Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) task force, which investigates child exploitation crimes and trains law enforcement agencies. Since 2006, Madigan’s ICAC task force has been involved in 540 arrests of sexual predators. The task force has also provided Internet safety training and education to more than 277,000 parents, teachers and students and 16,156 law enforcement professionals. Currently, 182 agencies are affiliated with the Illinois ICAC.

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