San Francisco police arrest Bay Area men on child pornography, exploitation charges

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — San Francisco police announced the arrests Friday of several men on charges relating to sexual exploitation and child pornography.

The arrests were spearheaded by the San Francisco Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit.

Many of the suspects are believed to have used social media and online platforms to contact their victims and store explicit photos.

Police say they were unable to release booking photos for two of the suspects because of “pending identification matters.”

Arturo Salamanca

The 36-year-old San Francisco resident is accused of storing child pornography on digital Cloud programs, according to police. Salamanca was taken into custody on July 12 by San Francisco investigators and parole agents.

In September, he was indicted by a federal grand jury on child pornography charges.

Salamanca is now in the custody of the U.S. Marshals.

Mendoza, 26, of Mill Valley, is accused of contacting a 14-year-old girl over social media in the summer of 2019.

Oscar Mendoza

Oscar Mendoza

Police say he intended to meet and “have sexual contact” with the teen. He was arrested by San Francisco police on July 29 after trying to meet with the 14-year-old victim.

Antoine Conners

Antoine Conners

The 33-year-old San Francisco man told police he had child pornography on his cell phone, according to San Francisco investigators. Police first came into contact with the man over the summer after officers were dispatched to the 2500 block of Mission Street for a man acting erratically.

After his admission to police, investigators seized his cell phone and found child pornography on the device and Cloud programs.

He was taken into custody Aug. 14 after an arrest warrant was issued.

Dewitt Burnham

Dewitt Burnham

The 64-year-old suspect is believed to have traded child pornography through the chatting app “Discord,” which San Francisco police say is often used by children. Burnham was arrested this summer after police found hundreds of pornographic photos and videos in his possession. He was arrested at his home on the 2200 block of Lyon Street in San Francisco.

Haval Kotrush

The 25-year-old San Francisco man was arrested this fall after police were tipped off that the man was trying to contact a 14-year-old girl through social media. On Sept. 2, police say he tried to meet and “have sexual contact” with the teen in San Francisco.

Robert Thornton

Robert Thornton

Thornton, 64, of Vallejo, was arrested Sept. 2 after trying to meet and have sexual contact with a 14-year-old girl in San Francisco. According to San Francisco police, the man tried to send sexually explicit photos to the teen.

He’s now facing several charges, including arranging to meet with a minor for sexual contact, going to an arranged meeting with a minor for sexual contact, sending harmful material to a minor and communicating with a minor for sexual contact.

Antonio Villareal

Antonio Villareal

The 21-year-old San Francisco man is accused of trading child pornography through the messaging app “Kik,” according to police. Police say they first began their investigation in the fall.

Police later served a search warrant on the 1200 block of Athens Street, where officers found a cell phone with hundreds of images and photos containing child pornography.

Jose Valasquez-Sop

Jose Valasquez-Sop

The 31-year-old San Francisco man is accused of trying to meet a 14-year-old girl via social media for sexual contact, police say. He was taken into police custody Oct. 2 after trying to meet the victim. Police have not said where he was arrested.

Jack Carlson

Police believe Carlson, 34, traded child pornography through Skype messenger, a platform they say is often used by kids. Officers first began their investigation in the fall.

They later served a search warrant at the man’s home on the 3300 block of 17th Street.

Officers found images and video showing child pornography and took Carlson into police custody on related charges.

David Magana

David Magana

The 36-year-old San Francisco man is accused of trading child pornography on Facebook and storing the content on the Cloud. Police first began their investigation into Magana in the fall, eventually issuing a warrant for his arrest on several counts of child pornography possession and distribution as well as enhancements.

He was later arrested at a business on the 500 block of Columbus Avenue. During his arrest, investigators found a cell phone, which contained hundreds of child pornography files, according to San Francisco police.

Teenager Arrested

In addition to the adult suspects, police also cited a San Francisco high school student for allegedly harassing and extorting a middle school student for sexually explicit images. Police first became aware of the incident this summer when the middle school student’s parent contacted San Francisco police.

Police say the suspect threatened the victim with harm and threatened to post explicit images on social media. The victim sent the suspect images — but the suspect still asked for more, according to police. The child refused to send additional photos, which prompted the suspect to post “compromising photos” on a public photo sharing platform, police say.

The suspect was cited for their alleged actions and released to their parents on violations relating to causing emotional distress and harassing a minor.

Cesar Ayala

Cesar Ayala

The 37-year-old is suspected of trading child pornography through the “Kik” app. At the man’s home on the 500 block of Scotts Street, police found several electronic devices with child pornography. He was taken into police custody during the investigation this fall, police say.

Anyone with information on the suspects or any related cases is asked to call San Francisco police at the 24-hour tip line at (415) 575-4444.

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