Hancock man arraigned on child sexual abuse material charges

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HANCOCK — The Attorney General’s Office announced that Wentworth C. Comes, Jr., 83, of Hancock, was arraigned today on three felony counts of possession of child sexual abuse material and two misdemeanor counts of possession of child sexual abuse materials.

The charges brought against Comes are the result of a criminal investigation conducted by the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (VT-ICAC), including personnel from the Attorney General’s Office, Homeland Security Investigations, Vermont State Police, and Randolph Police Department.

The investigation was initiated when VT-ICAC received three CyberTipline reports from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

The tips were reported by Microsoft after an individual uploaded files of suspected child sexual abuse materials onto their cloud storage servers.

Based on the criminal investigation of those tips, including the execution of a residential search warrant, Comes was identified as a suspect.

During a forensic review of Comes’ laptop and SD card, officers located the suspected child sexual abuse material.

Comes pleaded not guilty at his arraignment today in Vermont Superior Court, Addison Unit, Criminal Division.

The Court, Judge David Fenster presiding, ordered conditions of release which restrict Comes’ access to minors, electronic devices, and the internet.

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