Former St. Margaret Mary priest arrives back in Louisville

By Steve Burgin
September 2, 2015

LOUISVILLE, Ky. —Former St. Margaret Mary pastor Stephen Pohl will be released from federal custody on a $25,000 unsecured bond.

Pohl was in court Wednesday on a charge of knowingly accessing with intent to view material that contained an image of child pornography that had been transported using any means or facility of interstate commerce and foreign commerce by any means including by computer.

Pohl was arrested last month in Pinellas County, Florida. He resigned from his position at St. Margaret Mary a day before his arrest. In court Wednesday, the assistant U.S. attorney told the judge they don't believe Pohl was running when he was arrested at his sister's home.

Investigators said they found more than 150 pictures of children from St. Margaret Mary School on Pohl's electronic devices. Detectives said several of the pictures of students were inappropriate.

An examination of the hard drives from Pohl’s office and home computers showed the presence of child pornography. The images were not downloaded but rather appeared in the cache, indicating that he had accessed and viewed materials but did not download or purposely store them.

Pohl will be released to his mother’s house once it has been outfitted with electronic home-incarceration equipment. His mother and sister will be voluntary custodians.

Pohl is being held in Grayson County. He's expected to be released from custody Thursday morning.

In court, Pohl was ordered to have no contact with anyone at St. Margaret Mary, no contact with anyone under 18 and no access to the parish roster or yearbook.

As part of his terms for release, Pohl will also be restricted from the use of electronic devices with Internet access.

A grand jury will hear the case in mid-September. Pohl is due back in court on Sept. 29.

If he violates the terms of his release, Pohl loses his bond and he will be charged with contempt. He would also face enhanced penalties if he’s convicted of the charges against him.


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