Man charged with sexual abuse of 4-year-old boy

Posted: Thursday, February 21, 2002

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A 50-year-old Anchorage man has been charged with sexually abusing a 4-year-old boy and possessing more than eight thousand images of child pornography on his computers.

George Russell made his initial court appearance Wednesday to face three counts each of sexually abusing a minor and possession of child pornography.

A criminal complaint filed by detective David Parker indicates Russell was arrested after a seven-week police investigation that began when the boy's mother brought him to the police station Dec. 30.

The boy had complained that Russell, whom he called ''Grandpa George,'' had fondled him, slept naked with him on several occasions, and performed other improper acts.

Russell is a longtime friend of the boy's stepfather, and he baby-sat for the boy many times.

''Russell had asked if (the boy) could come over and spend the night because he had lost his wife in February, this was his first Christmas without her and he was lonely,'' according to the complaint.

During an interview with police, the boy said he asked Russell to stop touching him, but Russell continued to do so. He also told detectives he saw pornographic images on Russell's computer.

Police obtained search warrants and recorded conversations between Russell and the boy's stepfather. Russell repeatedly denied molesting the boy but said he might have touched him while helping him bathe or change.

Based on the boy's statement, police obtained more search warrants for child porn on Russell's computers in his trailer and found thousands of images.

Russell's criminal record consists of convictions for indecent liberties with a child in Washington state in 1977 and six counts of sexually abusing a minor in Alaska in 1984, according to the complaint. Last year he was convicted of driving while intoxicated.

He is being held in Cook Inlet Pre-Trial Facility in lieu of $35,000 bail.

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