Dalton Konat

New Carlisle man pleads in federal court to child porn possession

A New Carlisle man pleaded guilty to federal charges accusing him of producing and possessing child pornography.

Dalton Konat, 24, was charged in federal court with production of child pornography and possession of child pornography. Konat pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography and the production charge was dismissed.

He is due in court for sentencing Sept. 14. He faces up to a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, mandatory restitution, forfeiture and will undergo a mandatory special assessment before the sentencing date, a plea agreement document filed in the federal case says.

A federal judge will determine his sentence at the hearing.

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An investigation into Konat was started by the Clark County Sheriff’s Office when Clark County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Melchi was sent to meet with the child’s mother because she claimed she found nude pictures of her daughter on Konat’s phone, an affidavit says.

“She then showed me several still pictures of who she identified as her 11-year-old daughter,” the affidavit says. “The images were of the juvenile female in the shower, completely naked.”

Dalton agreed to go to the sheriff’s office for an interview, the affidavit says, where he initially denied having anything to do with the photos.

The mother of the child brought a digital memory card to the office, Melchi wrote, and on it, the investigator found a video.

“It showed Dalton setting up his phone, hiding it under the toilet in the bathroom, putting items around it to conceal the camera and phone,” the affidavit says. “He then leaves the bathroom and the juvenile female comes in.”

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At the end of the video, Dalton allegedly can be seen removing the phone, the affidavit says.

“It did not appear by the video the juvenile female had any idea he was videotaping her,” the court record says.

After showing Konat the video, Melchi said Konat allegedly told him that he has a problem.

“The (mother) was brought in at the end of the interview to talk to him and he just continued saying he was sorry,” the affidavit says.

Konat pleaded guilty to the charge in late June.

“Defendant agrees to plead guilty to count two of the indictment charging the defendant with possession of child pornography…,” the plea agreement says. “Defendant understands the nature of the charge to which he is pleading guilty. Defendant will plead guilty because defendant is in fact guilty.”

While the charge of production of child pornography was dismissed, the plea agreement does say that Konat admits that in the commission of possessing child pornography, he also committed the offense.

“Defendant further agrees and stipulates that the conduct charged in count one may be considered by the probation office and the court in calculating the sentencing guidelines range and in imposing a sentence,” the plea agreement says.

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Konat was indicted in Clark County Common Pleas Court on Jan. 29 with pandering obscenity involving a minor, illegal use of minor in nudity-oriented material or performance and endangering children.

Those charges were dismissed when he was indicted in federal court on Feb. 13.

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