Local charges dismissed, Bolter faces federal child pornography charges

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A former Campbellsville man has had a local charge against him dismissed, but now faces federal child pornography charges instead.

The man was charged in January with more than 2,000 crimes after nearly the same amount of images depicting children in sexual situations were found on his computer.

Brian Pickard, a detective with the Taylor County Sheriff's Office, arrested Michael William Bolter, 42, on Jan. 29. He has been lodged at the Taylor County Detention Center since.

In addition to the other charges, Bolter, a lifetime registered sex offender, was also charged with moving from his Campbellsville home to Lebanon without notifying probation and parole staff, as the terms of his registration require.

According to Bolter's arrest citation, he allegedly submitted his address to the Kentucky Sex Offender Registry as 137 Honeygale in Campbellsville. He allegedly moved from the Honeygale address to 261 Kobert Ave. in Lebanon on Jan. 25.

A grand jury indicted Bolter in March and charged him with failure to comply with the terms of his sex offender registration.

Last Tuesday, Taylor Circuit Court Judge Dan Kelly dismissed that charge without prejudice but with acknowledgment that there was probable cause for the arrest.

Court records state that prosecutors can re-indict Bolter, should they choose to, and the charge was dismissed because Bolter now faces federal criminal charges.

The federal charges stem from a sheriff's office undercover operation that led to the confiscation of Bolter's computer.

A Taylor County Sheriff's Department news release states that deputies discovered Bolter allegedly had photos and videos depicting children in sexual performances.

After Bolter was arrested for allegedly moving without permission, his vehicle and computer were seized.

On Jan. 30, according to the report, deputies completed an examination of Bolter's computer and allegedly found 1,021 photos and videos of children ages 1 to 15 being sexually abused and about 900 child erotic images.

After the undercover investigation, Bolter was charged with 1,021 counts of possession of matter portraying the sexual performance of a minor and 1,021 counts of prohibited use of electronic means to procure a minor in reference to a sexual offense. The offenses are Class D felonies, punishable by as much as five years in prison each.

Bolter pleaded not guilty to the charges in February. The charges were held to a Taylor County grand jury later in the month for possible indictment. Court records show that the grand jury has not indicted Bolter on those charges, however.

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney John Miller, who prosecuted the Taylor County case against Bolter, said the case is now being addressed in federal court.

On March 6, a federal criminal complaint was issued against Bolter. According to that complaint, he attempted to transport child pornography in Taylor County last December. The complaint also alleges that Bolter knowingly had child pornography on Jan. 29 that had been transported via computer.

On April 17, Bolter was charged in a federal indictment on charges of attempting to transport child pornography and possession of child pornography.

The indictment states that Bolter is to forfeit his computer and all of the alleged child pornographic images.

If convicted, according to the indictment, Bolter faces a minimum of 10 and a maximum of 30 years in prison and as much as lifetime supervised release. He also faces as much as $500,000 in fines.

According to federal court records, several documents in Bolter's federal case have been sealed. His case has been assigned to Judge H. Brent Brennenstuhl and attorney Jo E. Lawless of the U.S. Attorney's Office will prosecute. There is no attorney listed as being hired or appointed to represent him.

At press time, there are no court dates set in the federal case.

Bolter is a lifetime registrant who moved to Campbellsville from Ohio, according to the Kentucky State Police Online Sex Offender Registry.

He was originally convicted of selling sexual material to a minor and possession of child pornography in Massachusetts.