Veteran Philadelphia police officer facing child porn charges

(Miguel Martinez/Billy Penn)

(Miguel Martinez/Billy Penn)

This story originally appeared in 6abc

A 32-year veteran of the Philadelphia Police Department is behind bars for allegedly possessing and transmitting child pornography.

Williams Watts, Sr., 55, was taken into custody Thursday after the FBI executed a federal search warrant at his home.

Investigators say he used the application “WhatsApp” to download multiple files of child pornography.

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

During the time of the charged offenses, Watts was employed as a Philadelphia police officer.

“No one is above the law,” said Bradley S. Benavides, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “If you’re seeking out images of children being sexually abused and exploited, you’re perpetuating the victimization of innocents and the FBI is going to investigate and bring you to justice. Protecting children is the priority here.”

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

If convicted, Watts faces a maximum possible sentence of 40 years in prison.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw suspended Watts for 30 days with the intent to dismiss.

Get daily updates from WHYY News!

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal