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Alaska News

Grunwald slaying defendant now faces federal child porn charges

  • Author: Zaz Hollander
  • Updated: January 18, 2017
  • Published January 18, 2017

PALMER — A teenager charged in the death of 16-year-old David Grunwald now faces federal child pornography charges, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Anchorage.

Devin Peterson, 18, already faces state charges that he possessed and distributed child porn.

State prosecutors said the evidence against Peterson emerged during the Grunwald murder investigation, and it appears to also have led to the new federal charges.

An Anchorage federal grand jury indictment filed Wednesday alleges Peterson produced a video on July 22 of a "minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct," according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office. The indictment also alleges he possessed images of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Kyle Reardon said the production of a video can be any act that involves capturing or recording video. Reardon did not provide specifics about the events that led to the indictments.

But Alaska State Troopers have said Grunwald murder investigators seized a suspect's phone and found a July 22 video of a 22-year-old male having sex with a 15-year-old girl who appeared to be passed out. That led to a separate sexual assault case.

The new federal charges bring potentially harsher sentencing requirements if Peterson is convicted. They include a mandatory minimum of 15 years for the video production charge, according to Reardon.

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