A southwest suburban man was arrested earlier this week at his Shorewood residence and was charged with possession of child pornography. The arrest was announced today by Robert D. Grant, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
CHRISTOPHER KICE, age 41, of the 1100 block of Callaway Drive West, was arrested Monday night, without incident, by Special Agents assigned to the Chicago FBI’s Innocent Images Task Force (IITF). KICE was charged in a criminal complaint filed earlier this week in U.S. District Court in Chicago with one count of Possession of Child Pornography, which is a felony offense.
According to the complaint, investigators were first alerted to KICE’s possible involvement in the collection of child pornography by his employer, an unnamed Chicago area law firm where KICE was employed in the Information Technology Department. When co-workers noticed that numerous large files with suspicious sounding names, such as “kiddie” and “pre-teen”, had been downloaded on a company computer then transferred to removable storage devices, they notified the IITF.
Initial investigation by IITF personnel developed probable cause to conduct a search of KICE’s residence, which took place on March17th of this year, pursuant to a Federal search warrant. During the search, several computer hard drives and other digital storage devices were seized. A preliminary forensic review of the digital devices recovered during the search discovered numerous images and videos of what appeared to be child pornography.
A subsequent forensic examination conducted by the Chicago Regional Computer Forensic Laboratory (RCFL) discovered alleged pornographic images on one of the computer hard drives of what appeared to be a minor female child. Investigators recognized the background on these images, indicating that they might have been taken inside KICE’s residence. This discovery led investigators to arrest KICE that same evening.
KICE appeared before Magistrate Judge Maria Valdez in Chicago on Tuesday, at which time he was formally charged. KICE was ordered held without bond, pending his next court appearance, which is scheduled for tomorrow (Friday) at 2:00 PM before Judge Valdez. Until then, KICE will be held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (MCC) in Chicago. If convicted of the charge filed against him, KICE faces a possible sentence of up to ten (10) year’s incarceration.
A photograph of KICE accompanies this release. Anyone recognizing him or having any information which might be relevant to this investigation is asked to call the Chicago FBI at (312) 421-6700.
The FBI’s Innocent Images initiative was established in 1996 and is part of a nationwide effort to combat the manufacture, distribution and possession of child pornography. At present, there are 43 separate Innocent Images task forces in various FBI offices around the country, which are investigating similar cases.
The public is reminded that a complaint is not evidence of guilt and that all defendants in a criminal case are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Copies of the criminal complaint filed in this case are available from the Chicago FBI’s press office at (312) 829-1199.