Child pornography case against Rhinelander man involving 700+ images moves forwardSubmitted: 02/16/2018
Lane Kimble
Lane Kimble
News Director

Child pornography case against Rhinelander man involving 700+ images moves forward
RHINELANDER - Police think an Oneida County man downloaded hundreds of pornographic pictures of young girls using a private chatroom.

During Danial Smith's preliminary hearing Friday, Smith's attorney asked if police had any way of knowing it was his client who downloaded the more than 700 photos.

The state Department of Justice learned a computer near Rhinelander downloaded the pictures in late 2016 thanks to a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.  The internet protocol (IP) addresses from the downloads were linked to Smith's home on County C in the town of Stella.

Detectives went to the home with a search warrant. Smith, 44, first told detectives he had no idea why they were at his home, then later said the images "just popped up" while he was shopping for children's clothing. During a conversation with detectives later that day in a squad car, Smith told police he used the site "Chatstep" to access images.

"The images were of prepubescent, mainly females, showing their genitalia, showing they were naked," Oneida County Detective Sergeant Chad Wanta testified in court Friday.

Police confiscated several computer towers and Smith's cell phone for evidence.

Smith's attorney Brian Bennett asked if the detective could tell if the pictures had been "Photoshopped" to look like children. Detective Wanta said they all appeared to be real pictures of child pornography.

"Most of them were, the poses were sexually explicit, as if they were told or coach on how to pose for the image," Wanta said.

Judge Patrick O'Melia found enough evidence to move the case forward. O'Melia set an arraignment forMarch 12, during which Smith will enter a pela.

Smith faces up to 50 years in prison if convicted. He's currently free on a signature bond.

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ARBOR VITAE - You won't want to wear your best clothes to one race in May.

Minocqua's Color Run Fundraiser is a 3K and 5K race for Arbor Vitae-Woodruff and MJ1 schools.

The race is one of the schools' biggest fundraisers for field trips, additional school supplies and equipment.

The Color Run raised almost $20,000 last year.

"It comes from all of the kids and their fundraising in the community, with the help of grandparents and parents and friends," says AVW Principal Rich Fortier.

The race will be at the Minocqua Park Complex on May 5.

To find out how to register, click below.

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ANTIGO - A crowd gathered in Antigo to talk about drug abuse Monday night, about how it affects all aspects of the community and ways it could possibly be fixed.

One thing that everyone could agree on, is that it's an issue that needs to be resolved.

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TOMAHAWK - If you feel stir-crazy this time of year, taking a quick drive Tuesday afternoon might help.

Hometown Chiropractic in Rhinelander and Tomahawk hopes to spread smiles during, "Sunshine on the Streets."

The doctors will wave signs with their favorite positive quotes starting at 12:30 in the afternoon.

Chiropractors normally work to get your physical health in check, but they want to help your mental health, too.

"I want to say we are one of the smaller countries in the world, but we take almost 80 percent of the world's anti-depressants. So we want to make sure we have positivity energy and positive thoughts because it will help us heal better and feel better," says Dr. Grace Zuiker Nash.

"Sunshine on the Streets" also marks the First Official Day of Spring.

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VILAS AND ONEIDA COUNTIES - Oneida and Vilas Counties will close their snowmobile trails this week. 

Lincoln County will also close its remaining trails. Zones 2 and 3 are already closed. Zone 1 will close at midnight on Monday, March 19.

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RHINELANDER - A two vehicle crash caused Highway 8 to close down for almost an hour Monday.

The crashed happened around 1:30 p.m. west of Rhinelander.

A car was trying to turn into Roberts Repair when a truck hit it from behind.

There was one person in each car. At least one driver was taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

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LAKE TOMAHAWK - Dave Nance's job as a Camp American Legion volunteer means doing a little bit of everything. He's spent the last several years giving back to the place that gave him his life back.

"This is a special place. There's no place like it and it's life changing," said Nance who's from the Tomah-area. 

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RIB MOUNTAIN - A Wisconsin State Patrol Captain wants to know, who's ready to report for duty? The department is looking for  new cadets. But recruitment and training is no easy task.
"[It's] very hard to find qualified candidates. It's a struggle," said Wisconsin State Patrol Captain Adrian Logan.
Captain Logan wants five people to answer the call. 

The department's looking for new cadets who'll train to become state troopers.
However, the process of finding the right candidate is no easy task and takes dedication from both sides.
"It's a very extensive process," said Logan.
After passing a background check and interview, candidates will go through 12 weeks of field training, 26 weeks of training with an officer, then a yearlong probation period.
"You've got to be committed to it," said Logan.
The dedication for the role doesn't stop there. 

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