Colorado Springs Man Charged with Child Pornography Offenses
Magistrate Judge to Rule Monday Whether Defendant Should be Detained without Bond
|U.S. Attorney’s Office March 14, 2014|
DENVER—Francis Hector Calar, age 53, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, was arrested earlier this week after military police officers caught him pleasuring himself in his car outside a building with unsecured WiFi on Fort Carson Army Base, U.S. Attorney John Walsh and FBI Denver Special Agent in Charge Thomas Ravenelle announced. Following the military arrest, an investigation revealed that Calar possessed child pornography. He was arrested on Monday, March 10, 2014, and charged with this crime on Tuesday, March 11, 2014. He appeared in court on the 11th and was advised of the charges pending against him and his rights. Today, Calar appeared in U.S. District Court in Denver before Magistrate Judge Michael E. Hegarty for a detention hearing and a preliminary hearing. Calar waived his right to a preliminary hearing. The government requested the defendant be detained without bond. Magistrate Judge Hegarty stated he will issue a written ruling regarding detention on Monday.
According to the affidavit in support of the criminal complaint, at approximately 10:30 a.m., a military police officer was dispatched to investigate a complaint of a suspicious vehicle parked in a public parking lot located at a building on Fort Carson Army Base. Upon arrival, the officer observed an individual sitting in the driver’s seat of a green-colored Ford sedan. The officer attempted to contact the individual, later identified as Francis Hector Calar; however, Calar was intently focused on an image of the screen of his laptop computer. The officer saw that Calar was masturbating to a graphic image of child pornography. After finally noticing the officer’s presence, Calar quickly closed his laptop and threw it on the passenger seat. He then put his private parts away. He was then ordered to exit the car and was taken into custody.
Subsequent investigation revealed that Calar, a civilian military contract employee, often parked in the place where he was initially contacted because he was able to obtain unsecured WiFi access to child pornography. He used this access to view child pornography. Calar first became interested in child pornography approximately five or six years ago after his brother was arrested for the sexual assault of a child. Calar visited specific chat rooms and searched for child pornography during breaks from work.
Calar is active with children, coaching youth volleyball for young girls and youth baseball for young boys. He is also active in his church and has previously taught Sunday school for children at his church. While there is no current evidence Calar, pictured below, was sexually involved with a minor child, authorities request that if anyone knows of any inappropriate contact involving Calar and a child, they call the FBI at 303-629-7171.
If convicted of possession of child pornography, Calar faces not more than 10 years in federal prison and up to a $250,000 fine.
The investigation was conducted by the U.S. Army Criminal Investigative Division (CID) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Calar is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Alecia Riewerts Wolak.
Anyone accused of committing a federal felony crime has a Constitutional right to be indicted by a federal grand jury.
The charges contained in the criminal complaint are allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood (PSC), a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, PSC marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about PSC, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/. For more information about Internet safety education, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/resources.html and click on the tab “Resources.”