Father-daughter argument leads to child porn conviction of man 300 miles away

Anthony Maenza
York Dispatch

A dispute between a father and daughter in York County led to a police investigation that ultimately helped convict a New York state man on child pornography charges. 

Northern York County Regional Police spokesperson Lt. Gregg Anderson said the case originated in 2019 when the girl’s father got into an argument with her over cellphone usage. While questioning the girl, who was 13 at the time, local police investigators Stephen Lebo and Mark Baker found inappropriate things happening on the cellphone, Anderson said. 

Charles Porterfield

“The detectives looked into it and found the girl actually had a Paypal account,” Anderson said. “Detectives found guys were sending her money from Buffalo (New York) and different locations across the country. We contacted the FBI and said 'We have something bigger here.'” 

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The subsequent FBI investigation led to the conviction last week of Charles Porterfield, 37, of Springville, New York. Anderson said he didn't know if any other arrests or convictions had been made or could still be made as a result of the investigation. 

Porterfield was convicted of producing child pornography and committing the offense as a registered sex offender. The charges carry a mandatory penalty of life in prison. 

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In 2011, Porterfield was convicted on charges of engaging in a course of sexual conduct against a child in Erie County, New York. That led to a sentence of five years in prison and three years of supervision after his release. He was also required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.  

Less than one month after completing his post-release supervision, Porterfield paid the 13-year-old York County girl to engage in an online sexual relationship, according to prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of New York. Porterfield used the girl to produce images and videos of child pornography.  

Sentencing for Porterfield is scheduled for May 23, 2023.