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Press Release

Cranston Man Held on State Kidnapping, Domestic Violence Charges Charged in Federal Court with Possession and Distribution of Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Rhode Island

PROVIDENCE - A Cranston man charged and ordered held without bail on Rhode Island state kidnapping, indecent exposure, and domestic disorderly conduct charges made an initial appearance in federal court in Providence on Wednesday on a federal criminal complaint charging him with possession and distribution of child pornography.

Robert E. Soares, 38, was arrested and charged by Cranston Police on May 27, 2018, after he allegedly forcibly confined and kidnapped his girlfriend, exposed himself to others, and engaged in fighting and violent behavior. Cranston police were called to the woman’s residence when Soares allegedly refused to allow the woman to leave the apartment.

According to court documents, on May 30, 2018, Soares’ girlfriend contacted Cranston Police to report that she had received a call from an individual unknown to her who alleged to her that he was concerned about some photographs he allegedly received from Soares during the weeks leading up to Soares’ arrest. The individual described the photographs as “disgusting,” and said that they appeared to depict a nude young female.

A subsequent investigation by Cranston Police determined that in the weeks leading up to his arrest, Soares allegedly persuaded a 14-year-old girl to allow him to take several photographs and a video of her dressed only in her underwear. Additionally, a court-authorized search of Soares’ cell phone resulted in the discovery of a series of messages sent and received by Soares allegedly discussing photographs depicting child pornography that had been sent and received.

Soares initial appearance in federal court on a criminal complaint charging him with possessing child pornography and distribution of child pornography is announced by United States Attorney Stephen G. Dambruch, Cranston Police Chief Colonel Michael J. Winquist, and Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge Peter C. Fitzhugh.

A criminal complaint is merely an allegation and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Denise M. Barton.

The matter was investigated by the Cranston Police Department, with the assistance of members of the Homeland Security Investigations Task Force and Warwick Police Department.



Jim Martin
(401) 490-1092

Updated August 24, 2018

Project Safe Childhood
Press Release Number: 18-103