Sports announcer charged in child pornography case

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A local sports announcer and weekend news anchor for ESPN Radio 1250 was arrested last week on child pornography charges.

John Duffy, 46, of Carnegie, is charged with possession of computer images and video files that show children engaging in sexual conduct. The offense, according to the indictment unsealed Friday, occurred May 16.

He was arraigned yesterday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Amy Reynolds Hay.

According to an affidavit for a search warrant for Mr. Duffy's house, an undercover state trooper was investigating peer-to-peer file sharing that included child pornography in mid-April. On April 17, he discovered one computer that was sharing more than 100 files.

When the trooper viewed the list of files, the affidavit says, he recognized 18 that he knew contained child pornography. He downloaded two of those for confirmation.

The search warrant sought to seize a variety of items, including computers, storage media, letters, software and chat logs.

Previously, Mr. Duffy had worked with ESPN national radio as a local correspondent.

He works in the press box serving the media contingent at University of Pittsburgh football games at Heinz Field and as public address announcer for women's basketball at the Petersen Events Center.

Mr. Duffy also has done press box work at Steelers home games and public address announcing occasionally for the Penguins. He previously did the broadcast of the WPIAL football championships, as well.

Mr. Duffy's attorney, Melvin Vatz, declined to comment.

Officials of ESPN Radio 1250 and Pitt did not return phone calls seeking comment.

Mr. Duffy was released on a $50,000 unsecured bond.


Correction/Clarification: (Published July 26, 2007) John P. Duffy, 46, of Carnegie, who is charged with possession of child pornography, works in the press box at University of Pittsburgh football games serving only the media contingent there. This story as originally published July 24, 2007, was incorrect about his role at the football games.

Paula Reed Ward can be reached at pward@post-gazette.com or 412-263-2620.


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