Staff Sergeant re-arrested for child porn

Ronald Feliciano Jr. (Source: Columbus Police Dept.)
Ronald Feliciano Jr. (Source: Columbus Police Dept.)

By Lindsey Connell - bio | email

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) -  A Fort Benning soldier accused of having child pornography on his computer is now facing federal charges.

Staff Sergeant Ronald Feliciano Jr. was arrested by federal agents Wednesday.

The 28-year-old soldier is facing state charges- the Sexual Exploitation of Children. Columbus Police say he was arrested February 18, 2010 at his apartment in the Whisperwood complex off of Flat Rock Road during a search warrant.

He had posted bond in that case but now, he has also been indicted on federal charges. The staff sergeant was re-arrested by the United States Marshals Service and the Secret Service on one count of Possession of Child Pornography and appeared in federal court Thursday afternoon on his new charge. He entered a plea of not guilty.

Feliciano is a member of the 197th Infantry Brigade, a training brigade on Fort Benning.

According to his indictment, explicit images of minors engaged in sex were found on his laptop and on an external hard drive that were seized from his Columbus apartment.

Secret Service officials confirm they are working on the case but will not release how many pictures or videos were allegedly found on Feliciano's hard drives. The number is not listed in his indictment and prosecutors told the judge they did not have the information.

Staff Sergeant Feliciano faces up to ten years in prison, up to a $250,000 bond or both.

He was granted a $20,000 bond Thursday and must wear an electronic monitoring bracelet that he has to pay for.

He is allowed to have a computer but his search history can be viewed by the court at any time. He also has a curfew, set from 7 PM- 5 AM, and cannot travel outside of the Middle District of Georgia.

If convicted, he must register as a sex offender.

Feliciano's sergeant and attorney, David Roberts, had no comment for WTVM coming out of court but Roberts told the judge Feliciano is described as an "outstanding soldier" by his supervisors. Roberts says he has no prior criminal record.

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