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In an 'unthinkable' crime, James Ian McGlothlin uses students for child pornography

CLACKAMAS COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE - James Ian McGlothlinOn April 16, a special physical education instructor with ties to the Oregon City School District was sentenced to 28 years in prison for making child pornography.

James Ian McGlothlin, 41, has received a life term of supervised release following his federal prison sentence for the production of child pornography involving two very young children.

McGlothlin's federal sentence will run concurrently with a sentence imposed in Clackamas County Circuit Court on March 2. McGlothlin pleaded guilty to three counts of first-degree sexual abuse stemming from his work with disabled children as an OCSD instructional assistant.

McGlothlin was suspended by the school district on Feb. 16, 2016. Prior to that, he worked with a small number of developmentally disabled children as an adaptive physical education instructional assistant.

"Producing child pornography is an appalling crime," said Billy J. Williams, U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon. "It is unthinkable that someone would prey upon infants, toddlers and disabled children."

McGlothlin's arrest Feb. 19, 2016, came two days after Interagency Child Exploitation Prevention Task Force investigators executed a search warrant at his Portland home, seizing laptop computers and other items related to the ongoing investigation, including external hard drives, thumb drives, cell phones and digital cameras.

Investigators first learned of McGlothlin's actions while investigating an online bulletin board service used to advertise and distribute child pornography. A forensic examination of McGlothlin's computers uncovered sexually explicit images and videos of infants, along with essays where he discussed drugging and sexually abusing young children.

According to a federal criminal affidavit filed by HSI Agent Glenn Dimmick, during their search, agents found a laptop that was "open and running" from a work area in the garage.

Agents searched a locked filing cabinet next to the laptop and found a bottle of children's Benadryl allergy medicine, a latex cast of a child's hand (with suspected pubic hair on it) and 11 pairs of children's underpants (some of which appeared to have been worn).

According to federal court documents, the photos had been "enlarged and were almost life-sized, and had been cut out to include the girls' heads and shoulders." One of the photos was of an 8-year-old.

The children, records show, were known to the McGlothlin family.

Additionally, agents found a "homemade, headless child-size doll made out of cardboard and dressed in children's clothes" inside the locked cabinet, records show. The doll was wearing a pair of children's underwear over the top of the clothes.

During a forensic look at some of an external hard drive seized from McGlothlin's residence, agents found a directory labeled "'C' (located at root:/Forbidden Hobbies/Greater Portland Area and beyond /C)." Agents found five image files and five video files of a female toddler and an adult male, whose face was not visible, according to the federal affidavit.

In another essay, McGlothlin details his sexual abuse of a developmentally disabled 12-year-old who was in his care. The child, records show, was in his swim therapy class.

In a statement from 2016, OCSD Superintendent Larry Didway said, "As educators, child advocates and parents, we are all sickened by the details unfolding from this investigation."

Didway said the safety of students and staff is their top priority. Oregon City schools use fingerprinting and background checks for all staff, he said, and require "all employees to complete comprehensive safety training each year to help prevent and detect any behavior that might put students at risk."

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Homeland Security Investigations encourages the public to report suspected child predators and any suspicious activity at 866-DHS-2-ICE. Suspected child sexual exploitation or missing children may be reported to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children at 800-THE-LOST. Both phone numbers are toll-free 24-hour hotlines.

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