Tarleton State University professor charged with possession of child pornography
Charges were filed against Tarleton State University business professor, Paul Marcus Jones, for the possession of child pornography on June 12, 2020.
The affidavit states that a concerned citizen came forward on February 5 with suspicions that Jones was “possibly communicating in a sexual manner with an underage male.”
Although those allegations have not yet been proven, Jones later came in for questioning and admitted to viewing images of underage nude males.
Jones consented to a forensic examination conducted on his cell phone which he claimed was where he viewed said images. Multiple sexually explicit images of child pornography were found on his device.
Assistant Vice President of Marketing and Communications Cecilia Jacobs said, “Tarleton State University is aware that a part-time faculty member has been arrested for possession of child pornography. An investigation is ongoing. Tarleton’s highest priority is the safety and welfare of our students.”
Until July 1, Jones was listed to teach five classes in the fall 2020 semester. The University changed the professor of those specific sections to TBA or to be announced after being questioned about the actions they are taking regarding the issues surrounding Jones.
“Decisions on future teaching assignments are pending the outcome of the investigation,” said Jacobs.
Texan News made an attempt to contact Jones, however, there was no response. Jones’ attorney, Brady Pendleton, responded but had no comment on the matter.
This is not the first time Tarleton has dealt with issues concerning the consumption of child pornography by professors. In 2008, professor Thomas Dougherty was indicted for suspicious files found on his university computer. Dougherty was found guilty and sentenced to 10 years probation and fined $1,500 so it will be interesting to see what the final verdict is for Jones.
Texan News will update this story as more information comes to light in order to ensure students are informed about the legal actions Jones is facing as well as what Tarleton is doing to ensure student safety.