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Lake County state’s attorney sends Canine Browser to assist FBI in Indiana child pornography case

Canine Browser | Photo: Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office.

Canine Browser, who works for the Lake County State’s Attorney Office and specializes in electronic evidence detection, assisted the FBI in a child pornography case in Indiana that led to charges against a convicted child molester, officials said.

Browser is able to sniff anything with an electronic chip that stores information, the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office said.

He and his handler, Carol Gudbrandsen, were called to assist FBI agents with the investigation of a convicted child molester after authorities received a complaint by a book publisher on July 2.

Prosecutors said that the book publisher reported that material contained inside three books submitted for publication contained depictions of children engaging in sexually explicit conduct.

The books were authored by Michael Christianson, 50, of LaPorte, Indiana, who was later charged with transportation of child pornography.

The FBI said the books appeared to be geared toward children as they used large fonts, simple words and most of the sentences rhyme, according to a criminal complaint.

“The books explain and show images that encouraged children to play naked with one another, and encouraged children to play with naked adults. Photographs and illustrations in the books also include depictions of minor children engaging in sexually explicit conduct,” the FBI said.

Christianson had been convicted of child molesting in 2002 and was sentenced to 30 years in prison and required to register as a Sexually Violent Predator for the rest of his life.

He was released from prison in 2016 after serving less than half the original sentence and was still on probation at the time of the newly charged offense.

“We are so proud of our electronic evidence canine,” said Lake County State’s Attorney Michael Nerheim. “As we have said since the beginning, Browser is and will remain available to any law enforcement agency in need of his services.”

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Gang Response Investigative Team along with the Indiana State Police, Michigan City, Indiana Police Department, the Lake County, Illinois State’s Attorney’s Office and the LaPorte, Indiana County Sheriff’s Office.


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