Police: Chief of staff for Lawrence mayor facing child pornography charges

LAWRENCE, Mass. — The chief of staff for the mayor of Lawrence was arrested Monday night on child pornography charges, law enforcement officials said.

Jhovanny Martes-Rosario, 48, of Lawrence, is facing charges including two counts of possession of child pornography, according to Massachusetts State Police.

He plead not guilty in Lawrence District Court on Tuesday where he retained bail but agreed to three conditions requested by prosecutors: that he stay off the internet, surrender his passport, and stay away from children under 18 except his own son.

Troopers executing a court-authorized search warrant on electronic devices in Martes-Rosario’s home found dozens of images of child pornography on his iPad around 6:30 p.m., state police said.

The search warrant was obtained after the State Police Cyber Crime Unit received information in December from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children about images of child pornography uploaded from an IP address associated with Martes-Rosario.

Martes-Rosario was booked into the state police Andover barracks following his arrest. He was also fired from his city position on Monday, according to officials.

The Office of Lawrence Mayor Brian DePeña put out the following statement:

Mayor Brian A. DePeña made the decision to immediately dismiss Mr. Jhovanny Martes, Chief Staff of the office of Mayor DePeña, after receiving official information of his arrest due to causes that remain under investigation at this time. Mayor Brian A. DePeña’s office will provide more details on this once they reach his office.

An investigation remains ongoing.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates as more information becomes available.

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