News and Press Releases


FRIDAY - June 13, 2008


RALEIGH - United States Attorney George E.B. Holding announced that in federal court on June 10, 2008, JOSEPH DALE RACKLEY, 52, of Garner, North Carolina, pled guilty before United States District Judge James C. Dever, III, to possession of child pornography.

According to a Criminal Information filed on May 12, 2008, the Dunn Police were call ed to the Dunn Police were called to the Betsy Johnson Regional Hospital after it was discovered that RACKLEY, an employee at the hospital, had been using his work computer to access and view images of child pornography on November 21, 2005. A forensic analysis of the computer was conducted, which showed that 125 digital images of child pornography were on the computer. The images included adult males having various types of sex with prepubescent females.

In light of the evidence recovered from the hospital, a search warrant on Rackley’s residence was obtained and executed. During the course of the search, three computers were seized. One of the computers included approximately 540 images identified as either child pornography or child erotica. In addition, CP images were recovered from unallocated space, meaning they had been previously deleted but were recovered forensically. Numerous images matched images of known victims in the database of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), indicating that they showed real children being sexually abused. The other 2 computers, which were found in a closet, contained no contraband.

Mr Holding commented: “The degree to which the abuse of children and the prevalence of child pornography has permeated our society is alarming. The degree to which child abuse and pornography are related is frightening. Nationwide, and here in the Eastern District of North Carolina, the United States Justice Department will continue to make the prosecution of those involved in these crimes one of top priorities. And, we applaud the investigators involved in this case as well as the alert employee at the hospital who did not fail to report what he found on the defendant’s computer.”

Sentencing is set for September 22, 2008.

Investigation of the case was conducted by the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation and the Dunn Police Department. Assistant United States Attorney Ethan Ontjes served as prosecutor for the government.


News releases are available on the U. S. Attorney’s web page at within 48 hours of release.

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