An employee of the Boston Children’s Museum has been arraigned on a single charge of child pornography possession after a co-worker discovered the explicit images on his thumb drive.
According to the Suffolk District Attorney’s office, the museum’s long-time facilities coordinator, Paul Fest, 43, admitted to possession of child pornography after a thumb drive he left in a co-worker’s car was found to contain explicit images.
Fest told Boston.com that he worked at the museum for 15 or so years. As for the charges pending against him, Fest had only this to say: “I don’t know what to say. There’s more to it.”
Assistant District Attorney Gerry Cahill requested $25,000 bail and that Fest wear a GPS, have no unsupervised contact with children, and not set foot within 1,000 feet of any school.
The museum released a statement to Boston.com on May 19 saying Fest had been fired:
Late Thursday afternoon, Boston Children?s Museum learned from the Boston Police that Paul Fest, a longtime facilities coordinator at the museum, had been arrested on charges of possessing child pornography. These allegations are deeply disturbing, and after we learned of his arrest we immediately terminated Mr. Fest. Mr. Fest?s duties at the museum involved coordinating the facilities set-up and breakdown of various museum events. The single most important priority of Boston Children?s Museum is the safety and care of our visitors. This is a very concerning matter, and we are cooperating fully with the Boston Police in connection with their ongoing investigation.
Charlayne Murrell-Smith, the museum’s vice-president of external relations, told Boston.com: “We are taking this situation very seriously. We want to make sure this is kept apart from the museum. We will let due process take its course and let law enforcement handle this.”
The co-worker turned the thumb drive into authorities after viewing its contents, and said her car was often used by museum employees for errands. Boston Police detectives determined Fest to be the owner of the drive after searching his home computer.Shannon McMahon can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on twitter @shanmcmahon_.