NASA Employee Arrested on Child Porn Charges

Court documents indicate, A 50-year-old employee of Johnson Space Center faces five counts of possession of child pornography.

He is also charged with three of those counts with an "intent to promote" enhancement.

The charges against Scott Messenger were filed July 11, but the counts were in connection with a Webster Police Department investigation in 2018.

Investigators in court docs say, Messenger had an IP address assigned to him that was found to have multiple lewd images.

The IP address was also found to be sharing the pornographic images through peer-to-peer software, documents state.

According to documents, the detective served a search warrant of Messenger's home in El Lago, where Messenger admitted to using the sharing software to "download videos for his children to watch that are based in Japan and are adult pornography."

Detectives say, Messenger insisted he downloaded the content by accident and later deleted them.

When asked what terms he used to search for the files, Messenger described them as "probably pretty sick."

According to court docs, a computer forensic analyst found eight "obvious" child pornography images and hundreds of child erotica images on Messenger's computer, but most were deleted.

Messenger was booked on the child porn charges, but as of Tuesday, was free on bond.

He is on unpaid administrative leave.

NASA has not commented on the arrest, but according to their website, Messenger is a planetary scientist within JSC's Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science Division.

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