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December 04, 2013

LITTLE ROCK – Attorney General Dustin McDaniel announced today that agents from his office have arrested a Benton County man for possession of child pornography.

Richard John Sheffield, 29, of Centerton was arrested late Tuesday at his residence on 30 counts of distributing, possessing or viewing matter depicting sexually explicit conduct involving a child, a Class C felony. He was being held in the Benton County Detention Center pending a bond hearing.

Sheffield is a Level 2 registered sex offender.

“Those who attempt to exploit our children via the Internet will be pursued and arrested by law enforcement agencies in this State that are committed to preventing such heinous crime,” McDaniel said. “We look forward to presenting our case in court in this matter.”

Agents with the Attorney General’s Cyber Crimes Division executed a search warrant at Sheffield’s residence in the 1000 block of Applewood Circle in Centerton on Tuesday. Agents seized electronic evidence that will be analyzed at the Cyber Crimes Unit Forensic Lab in Little Rock.

Special Agent Mike Lett of the Attorney General’s Office began investigating Sheffield last month after suspecting that child pornography was being possessed at Sheffield’s residence.

The Benton County Sheriff’s Office assisted in the investigation and arrest.

The Attorney General’s Office will turn over its completed case file to Benton County Prosecuting Attorney Van Stone.

Charges are merely accusations and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.