Operation 'Cyber Guardian' Puts Seven Behind Bars.


Daytona Beach, FL - Seven local men are behind bars on possession and distribution of child pornography. 'Operation Cyber Guardian' began on January 1, 2020 in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security and the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office to identify, locate and apprehend local subjects who use social media to promote and distribute child pornography online.  This has become increasingly important now, especially with schools closed and many children online.

All but two of the men are still in the Volusia County Jail. Sixty-one-year-old Michael Booth is charged with 20 counts. He was arrested on February 14, 2020. He's been released on a $50,000 bond. The other man, 31-year-old Michael Castano faces 40 counts. He was arrested just last week, on March 31. He's out on an $80,000 bond.

The other five still in jail are as follows:

  • Scott Stewart, 62 (DOB 11/14/1957), arrested 1/9/20. Charges: 21 counts.  Bail: $315,000
  • Austin Engelkens, 21 (DOB 7/14/1998), arrested 3/25/20. Charges: 10 counts.  Bail: $100,000
  • John Walker, 38 (DOB 09/11/1981), arrested 3/25/20. Charges: 11 counts.  Bail: $110,000
  • Adam Chancery, 20 (DOB 12/21/1999), arrested 3/25/20. Charges: 30 counts.  Bail: $150,000
  • Joshua Burgess, 36 (W/M 11/07/1983), arrested 4/2/20. Charges: 10 counts.

Detectives executed eight residential search warrants, resulting in seven arrests. Additional arrests are pending the results of digital forensics. 

All arrested  were in possession of electronic images or videos of children depicted in sexually explicit situations.

 Anyone with information about subjects in possession of child pornography or attempting to solicit a child online is urged to contact our Child Exploitation Unit at (386) 323-3574.

To find out about sexual offenders living in your area, go to offender.flcjn.net.

Parents, we urge you to be aware of your kids’ online habits as we work together to protect them from sexual predators. Here are a few tips to help you keep your children safe online:

  1. Be aware and involved. It’s important to be direct when teaching kids how to use the Internet safely and responsibly. You need to explain exactly what is and isn’t OK.
  2. Do your homework. Ask your children what they want to do online, and then check out those websites, investigate ratings (see Commonsense Media for ratings and reviews), and explore parental-control features. YouTube has a safety page, for example, that details issues all parents should be familiar with, such as privacy, hate content, and cyberbullying.
  1. Talk to your children. Ask your children questions about what they are looking at online and who their friends are. From time to time, sit with your children when they are online to get a sense of what they are doing.
  2.    Report suspicious activity. Let your Internet service provider or the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (1-800-843-5678) know immediately. Tell your child to let you know if something inappropriate happens to him online.


No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment