Former Wise County band director bound over to Kentucky grand jury

Mike Still • Feb 21, 2020 at 12:30 PM

WHITESBURG, Ky. — The case of a Wise County Schools band director arrested Feb. 12 on child pornography charges has been bound over to a Letcher County grand jury.

Clerks in the Letcher County district court clerk’s office confirmed that Dalton Matthew Bates, 23, Neon, Kentucky, had his case sent to the grand jury after a Thursday preliminary hearing.

Bates was arrested by Kentucky State Police investigators following an “undercover Internet Crimes Against Children investigation,” according to the KSP arrest report.

Bates is accused of using social media sites for messaging other people about sharing child sexual exploitation images, according to the arrest report. Investigators found “numerous” images and videos of minors in sexual performance, the report said, and Bates allegedly admitted to operating the account and sending the messages.

Bates was initially charged with one felony count of first-offense distribution of matter portraying sexual performance by a minor and 20 felony counts of possessing or viewing matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor.

According to the clerk’s office, Bates remained in the Letcher County Jail Thursday. Bond was set last week at $100,000 cash, home confinement and electronic monitoring.

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