• Archdiocese of Seattle IT analyst charged with possessing child porn

    By: Michael Spears

    Updated:

    Archdiocese of Seattle IT analyst Philip Gilbert has been charged with two counts of possessing child pornography, according to charging papers obtained by KIRO 7.

    A spokesperson for the Archdiocese of Seattle said they learned about the charges from a KIRO 7 interview request Tuesday.

    “As soon as we learned of this from your inquiry, we immediately revoked all his access, put him on administrative leave and started to further investigate the situation,” said Helen McClenahan, with the Archdiocese of Seattle.

    Court documents state Microsoft tipped off the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in January that “a user had uploaded image .jpg file(s) containing depictions of a minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct.”

    Investigators tracked the computer’s IP address to Gilbert’s home in the Issaquah area, according to charging papers that said the King County Sheriff’s Office obtained a warrant to search the home in April.

    Court documents state Gilbert’s laptop and an external hard drive connected to it were removed from the house and “depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct were found on the thumbcache of the laptop and in the recycle bin of the external hard drive.”

    “Philip gave a recorded statement admitting that he’d been looking at depictions of minor engaging in sexually explicit conduct on websites like 155chan and 180chan on the laptop in his office,” charging papers said. “He said that he would save the images to an external hard drive that was also in his office.”

    Gilbert also “admitted to using Bing to look for visually similar images to the depictions of minors he found,” according to charging papers, which said Gilbert’s wife and another woman apparently living at their address “denied having anything to do with child pornography.”

    Jail records show Gilbert was booked and released from jail on Monday. King County prosecutors said he’s been charged with two counts of possession of depictions of minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct in the first degree and the judge requested he not have any contact with minors.

    According to Gilbert’s LinkedIn account, he has worked as an information technologies analyst at the Archdiocese of Seattle for seven years.

    Helen McClenahan with the Archdiocese of Seattle told KIRO 7 in an email:

    “Today is the first we learned of these charges. Our Chancery computers have strict website blockers that deny access and immediately flag if any employee tries to access a banned site. Phil was using his personal laptop, which is not connected to our network. This is why we believe we weren’t contacted by authorities. But we are still investigating the situation. As soon as we learned of this from your inquiry, we immediately revoked all his access, put him on administrative leave and started to further investigate the situation.”
     

     


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