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Jury indicts man on child porn charges

ALBANY, Ga. -- A federal grand jury Wednesday indicted Sean T. Petroff on charges of coercion and enticement, and possession of child pornography, court documents stated.

Once free on $50,000 bail on child exploitation charges in Lee County, Petroff, 39, has been in Dougherty County Jail since Feb. 16, a jail spokeswoman said.

"We have no bail on him and a hold for U.S. Marshals," the spokeswoman said. "He has 15 felony charges of exploitation of children on him."

Dougherty County Police arrested Petroff of 4222 Hardaway Drive for child exploitation. He is accused of having pictures on his computer of children engaging in sex acts, said Detective David Zigan on the day after Petroff's arrest.

"The 282 pictures on his computer show 5-year-old to 13-year-old children engaged in sex acts with partners, usually older men," Zigan said. "There are also 1,942 pictures of child erotica ... little girls in underwear and bathing suits posing sexually."

Petroff had previously been arrested for enticing a child for indecent purposes and child exploitation by Lee County Sheriff's deputies.

First Sgt. Tommy Goodwin posed as a 13-year-old girl in a computer chat with Petroff, officers said.

Petroff arranged for who he thought was a 13-year-old girl to meet him for sex, Goodwin said. Instead Petroff met his arrest by deputies.

Seizing Petroff's computers allowed the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to analyze the pictures in the computer's drives. Those pictures led to Petroff's arrest in Dougherty County.

Petroff faces 15 felony charges in Dougherty County and Zigan said that more charges are on the way for the other pictures.

The U.S. Attorneys Office in Macon through Sue McKinney, public affairs specialist, said that because the indictments were just handed down they couldn't talk about them.

McKinney sent an e-mail stating, "Criminal indictments are only charges and not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty."