AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) – A former Perryton police officer who was arrested on federal charges of child pornography, Aaron Bennett Daugherty, has pleaded guilty after being indicted.
Daugherty was arrested in February 2021 and put on administrative leave by the City of Perryton, as previously reported. He was charged with uploading and sharing sexually explicit images of children on the internet, according to Acting U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Prerak Shah.
The United States Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Texas released documents detailing Daugherty’s guilty plea and evidence against him.
According to court documents, Daugherty admitted that in June of 2020 he transported child pornography through the internet. Previously, in January of 2020, an undercover officer investigating the use of the Kik messaging app to share child pornography witnessed one user sharing multiple videos with other chat members. In June of that year, that same user was noted as posting the message “I’m here to look at CP, everybody, not to make out with you Trinity! Go on with the CP content!”
Daugherty was identified as that Kik user in February of 2021.Court documents said that after being contacted at the Perryton Police Department by the FBI and a Texas Ranger, Daugherty agreed to be interviewed and admitted to participating with the chat groups.
Daugherty’s guilty plea was filed on June 20, 2021.
“Mr. Daugherty’s alleged conduct not only victimized children, it shattered the public’s trust given to him as a police officer,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Prerak Shah in February. “The Department of Justice will not tolerate anyone who uses the internet to prey on children for sexual gratification.”
“Law enforcement officers are held to the highest standards,” said Dallas FBI Special Agent in Charge Matthew J. DeSarno in February. “Instead of protecting our most vulnerable population this defendant exploited them by allegedly viewing, uploading and sharing child pornography. We will continue to work with our partners to serve justice for these innocent victims.”