EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

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New Hampshire

October 18, 2012

Salem man convicted on pornography charges

BRENTWOOD — A Salem man, arrested after photographing young girls at Canobie Lake Park, faces years in prison after he was convicted on child pornography charges yesterday.

David Lantagne will be sentenced Jan. 4 on three counts of attempted possession of sexual images, each Class A felonies punishable by seven and a half to 15 years in state prison.

Lantagne was indicted on six counts of the charge by a Rockingham Superior Court grand jury in December. He was arrested in July 2011 after a woman at Canobie Lake Park in Salem complained to park security that Lantagne was using a cellphone to take photos of her young daughter while she played in the water.

When confronted by security, Lantagne admitted having a “problem” and said he also photographed girls at The Mall at Rockingham Park.

He was initially charged with disorderly conduct and violation of privacy. The charges against Lantagne were elevated when Salem police seized his home computer and found images of nude young girls.

The children were not the young girls photographed in bathing suits at Canobie Lake Park.

Lantagne, 46, fought the charges against him, prompting a two-day hearing in June before Judge Marguerite Wageling, who found him guilty yesterday.

Lantagne’s attorney, John Macoul, asked Wageling to bar the cellphone photos from being submitted as evidence.

During the hearing, park employees testified about their encounter with Lantagne, saying he held the cellphone below his waist to photograph the girls while trying not to be detected.

Wageling ruled in July that police had the right to confiscate Lantagne’s cellphone and to detain him.

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