By MELINDA WILLIAMS
RADFORD – A criminal justice professor is now charged with production of child pornography, in addition to assault on a police officer, after being arrested on new charges Thursday evening.
Radford City Police Department Lt. Andy Wilburn said Taj Mahon-Haft allegedly resisted arrest when officers went to Mahon-Haft’s Radford residence Thursday evening to serve new warrants. The new warrants charge 24 counts of possession of child pornography and nine counts of production of child pornography.
Mahon-Haft was arrested March 21 on 24 other counts of possession of child pornography as a result of images found in computers seized when police executed a search warrant on his residence in December. However, Wilburn said the new pornography charges stem from “additional child porn images” recovered from a laptop computer seized March 21 during a search of the man’s home.
“These images were downloaded while Mahon-Haft was out on bond related to previous drug charges,” said Wilburn. As a result of the December search, Mahon-Haft was indicted on three counts of possession of a Schedule I drug and one count of possession of marijuana March 8.
Wilburn said charges of assault on a police officer, obstruction of justice and resisting arrest also were filed Thursday as a result of Mahon-Haft allegedly resisting arrest.
Although Wilburn did not specify what led to the child pornography production charges, he indicated Virginia Code defines the production of child pornography as “anyone who knowingly takes part in or participates in the filming, photographing or other production of child pornography by any means.”
Mahon-Haft is being held without bond at New River Valley Regional Jail in Dublin. A $10,000 secured bond had been set on the earlier porn charges and Mahon-Haft was released on unsecured bond on the drug charges.
Wilburn said the investigation is continuing.