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Plea likely from child porn suspect

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Hawks tells police he viewed naked girls as young as 6, ‘touched’ 8-year-old niece

By BEN CARLSON

The Lawrenceburg man charged last year with 70 felony counts of possessing and distributing child pornography is expected to enter a plea when he appears today (Wednesday) in Anderson Circuit Court.
Mark Hawks, 55, was indicted in July of 2011 after investigators with the Kentucky State Police determined he was viewing, downloading and sharing child pornography from his Secretariat Drive home.
Hawks was charged here and in Shelby County because the images he was allegedly downloading and viewing were also found on a computer he used while working at Katayama American in Shelbyville.
Armed with a search warrant, investigators approached Hawks at his home and interviewed him outside after he expressed concern that his wife would find out what he was doing, according to a transcript of the interview they conducted that night.
During that interview, Hawks revealed that he became “stimulated” by looking at images of video of pre-pubescent girls as young as 6 years old, and that he had previously been convicted of inappropriately touching an 8-year-old niece while babysitting.
Documents on file also include chilling descriptions of photo and video files Hawks allegedly possessed or viewed, including naked children being forced into sexual encounters with adults and others being forced to show their genitalia.
When police arrived at his home, Hawks told them he knew what they were looking for, and that the computer containing the images was in the trunk of his car.
A police search of computers inside the home owned by Hawks’ wife and college-aged son did not reveal child pornography, according to the transcript.
Hawks told investigators that he is heterosexual and has no interest in boys. He said he was stimulated by looking at young naked girls, but aside from being charged for touching his niece, never tried to have sexual relations with them.
Asked by an investigator the age of the youngest girls he viewed, Hawks responded, “Eight, 9, 6, I don’t know.”
“I’m going to say that the age range of your pornography for sex items is between the age of 8 and adults,” the investigator says in the transcript.
“That’s at least fair,” replied Hawks.
“Do you find you like a certain child video? I mean what age group do you like?” the investigator asked.
“I just look at them all,” replied Hawks.
Hawks also revealed to investigators that he was charged in the early 1990s with indecent exposure for allegedly showing his genitals to two teenage girls in Ohio, adding that the charge was later dismissed.
He said he began looking at child pornography while he was separated from his wife.
Hawks said a woman he was with at that time was concerned that her daughters were being sexually abused, and that she was afraid they had been videotaped performing sexual acts.
Hawks told investigators that he began searching the Internet for images of the girls, which lead him into being “stimulated” by those types of images.
Asked by investigators if he should be around young girls, Hawks said no.