State agents arrested two local men last week in unrelated child pornography investigations, one of whom admitted that he had been using a webcam to secretly record a teenage girl in her bedroom, according to the attorney general's office.
The attorney general's Child Predator Unit brought charges against Matthew Bockhouse, 36, of New Kensington, and Brian Vandruff, 41, of South Park.
Both were being held in jail pending preliminary hearings next week.
The case against Mr. Bockhouse began in January with agents investigating child porn consumers who access and trade porn through an online file-sharing network.
After zeroing in on his computer, agents obtained a search warrant on Thursday for his residence on North Bluff Drive, where he lives with his wife and a 17-year-old girl.
Agents said they recovered more than 100 child porn video files on his computer that he had downloaded from various sources, some featuring children as young as 2, along with evidence that he had used a webcam in the girl's room to record nude images of her.
When questioned, agents said he admitted that he had used the webcam to secretly record her getting undressed in her bedroom and also downloaded nude images she took of herself on her cellphone.
The girl told agents she wasn't surprised that Mr. Bockhouse was downloading child porn and said she "doesn't feel safe in the house with him," according to the complaint.
He remained jailed pending a hearing Feb. 27.
In the second case, agents arrested Brian Vandruff after raiding his South Park residence Wednesday following an online investigation that also began in January.
He is accused of using a file-sharing network to download and distribute child porn and faces a preliminary hearing on Feb. 26.
Agents arrested a third man last week, as well, in Delaware County after a similar investigation involving file-sharing.
Thomas Brennan, 34, was charged with 20 counts of possession and two counts of distribution and was released on bond pending a March 24 hearing.
Since its creation in 2005, the Child Predator Unit has arrested several hundred suspects on child porn charges across the state.
Torsten Ove: email@example.com or 412-231-0132. First Published February 17, 2014 12:14 PM