Trooper: Suspended Allegan fire chief admits to child porn

ALLEGAN, MICH. - A Michigan State Police trooper testified that suspended Allegan District fire Chief Matt Gillies admitted to sexually abusing a 4-year-old girl and recording it.

During an earlier sworn hearing, the trooper affirmed Gillies sexually abused the young girl at his home and recorded it in September.

Trooper Gerald Yott said investigators were first alerted to child sexually abusive material on a photo-sharing website. He says police then tracked IP addresses to computers at the 34-year-old suspect's home and at his fire station.

In another part of the probable cause hearing, Yott testified that it appears Gillies was involved in a sexual act at the fire station, which involved sexually explicit images, but not with another person. 

The trooper described details from the police interview with Gillies.

"I explained to him that I felt he was guilty for the count of CSC second degree, manufacturing of child sexually abusive material, and possession of child sexually abusive material, and asked him of those three counts what he felt he was guilty of and he admitted that he was guilty of all three," Yott testified in the previous probable cause hearing. 

"They've charged him with particular crimes, he's entitled to defend on those particular crimes regardless of what statements he may have made to the officer, and it's my opinion based on what I understand of the charges that he does viable defenses despite what the officer claims he told him," says Anastase Markou, Gillies' defense attorney. 

A court magistrate read the charges Tuesday, Nov. 1, during Gillies' video arraignment that are related to child pornography. They include second-degree criminal sexual conduct, manufacturing child sexually abusive material, possession of child sexually abusive material and two counts of using a computer to commit a crime.

If convicted, Gillies faces up to 20 years in prison.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Nov. 15.

The Allegan fire district board learned Friday, Oct. 21, of the child porn investigation against chief Gilles and suspended him without pay. He was promoted to the position of fire chief on Sept. 7.

(© 2016 WZZM)


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