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Former Idaho budget director Marty Peterson charged with 11 more felonies in child porn case

Idaho

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Martin L. “Marty” Peterson, who worked for University of Idaho and in state politics for many years, made his initial court appearance via video on three felony counts of accessing sexually exploitive images of minors. He was released on bond. | Katherine Jones, Idaho Statesman

BOISE (Idaho Statesman) — Ada County prosecutors have filed additional child pornography charges against Martin L. “Marty” Peterson.

An Idaho political fixture, Peterson, 76, was initially charged on Oct. 4 with three felony counts of viewing/accessing sexually explicit images of minors. Prosecutors on Dec. 17 filed an amended complaint charging Peterson with 14 felony counts of viewing/accessing sexually explicit images of minors.

Some of the images Peterson allegedly accessed online involved sexual acts with children age 3 and younger.

Peterson’s preliminary hearing on the amended complaint is set for 9:30 a.m. Jan. 21 at the Ada County Courthouse.

During Peterson’s initial arraignment on Oct. 4, Ada County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Katelyn Farley told the court that the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Unit received a “cybertip” in January 2019 from Microsoft Bing alleging that child pornography had been uploaded to a computer.

RELATED | Former Idaho state budget director charged with sexual exploitation of a minor

The Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Unit is a coalition of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies that investigate and prosecute individuals who use the internet or other technology to criminally exploit children.

Investigators from the Idaho Attorney General’s Office and Boise police traced the computer to Peterson’s home. During an Oct. 3 search of his Boise home, Peterson allegedly told investigators that he viewed legal and illegal pornography, the prosecuting attorney told the judge.

At the Oct. 4 arraignment, Ada County Magistrate Judge Michael Oths set Peterson’s bond at $20,000 and issued a no-contact order prohibiting Peterson from having any contact with unaccompanied minors. The judge also ordered Peterson to surrender his passport and not access the internet.

Peterson has been a figure in Idaho politics for five decades. He served on U.S. Sen. Frank Church’s staff, on former Gov. Butch Otter’s transition team, as the executive director of the Association of Idaho Cities and on the Idaho Humanities Council, per his page on the Idaho Humanities Council website. He was also the budget director for former Govs. John Evans

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