Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Feds must think Missouri resident Scott J. Wells has superpowers because they charged him with child-porn offenses that are physically impossible to commit

Scott J. Wells

How did federal prosecutors level child-pornography charges on Missouri resident Scott J. Wells, even though their own narrative shows it was physically impossible for him to commit the alleged offenses?

The charging documents the feds prepared are kind of important -- Wells has been unlawfully detained for more than two years, based on them. But does anyone in the Western District of Missouri bother to proof read their own filings? Does anyone bother to read them at all? The answer to both questions seems to be no. (The charging documents are embedded at the end of this post.)

The case against Scott Wells begins unraveling near the end of page 3, moving on to page 4, of the criminal complaint-affidavit in Case No. 6:17-cr03043-MDH, under the heading "Probable Cause." James D. Holdman Jr., a special agent (SA) with United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) in Springfield, MO, prepared the affidavit and writes as follows:

Probable Cause 
7. On March 8, 2017, Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force (SMCCTF) Officer (TFO) Lee Walker reviewed two CyberTips, 16533142 and 16099575, from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). Both CyberTips were initiated by Facebook. . . . CyberTip 16099575 was received by NCMEC on December 21, 2016, and CyberTip 16533142 was received by NCMEC on January 15, 2017.

8. CyberTip 16533142 was initiated by Facebook, after a file, 9p6ov3uhu4048okk15645265_10210760647827988_2086195755_n.jpg., containing suspected child pornography had been uploaded from a Facebook account. The suspect file was uploaded from a Facebook account with a screen name of scott.wells.79 and user ID 11033732066. The account listed a verified email address of scottw3820@yahoo.com. The suspect file was uploaded on December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 hours UTC, using IP address This affiant reviewed the image from CyberTip 16533142. The image depicts a minor, prepubescent female lying on what appears to be a bed with her pants pulled down, her legs spread and up in the air, exposing her vaginal and anal area. The minor female's hands are on her bottom.

9 CyberTip 16099575 was initiated by Facebook after a file, erhdoxdu14c8wk44015644194_10210760665228423_1722966896_n.jpg., containing suspected child pornography had been uploaded from a Facebook account and sent to another Facebook account. The suspect file was uploaded to and sent from scott.wells79's Facebook account. The suspect file was uploaded on December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 UTC, using IP address The suspect file was sent from scott.wells79's account to an account with a Facebook screen name of kara.adkins1007. This affiant reviewed the image from CyberTip 16099575. The image depicts a minor, prepubescent female laying on her stomach with no pants on, with her legs spread, exposing her vaginal and anal area.

First, we note that Nos. 7-9 deal with two issues: (1) No. 7 describes Facebook's actions in sending a "cyber tip" to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which forwarded the tip to a law-enforcement task force in Southwest Missouri; (2) Nos. 7 and 8 describe actions Scott Wells allegedly took, sparking a search of his home and an arrest.

Second, we note the areas in Nos. 8 and 9, highlighted in yellow, where Holdman states multiple times that Wells "uploaded" suspect images from his own Facebook account -- the second time sending the image to another Facebook account. I don't claim to be an expert on computer terminology, but I'm pretty sure there is a difference between an "upload" and a "download." Here is how one Web site puts it:

Uploading is the process of putting web pages, images and files onto a web server. Downloading is the process of getting web pages, images and files from a web server.

To make a file visible to everyone on the internet, you will need to upload it. When users are copying this file to their computer, they are downloading it.

In other words, when an image originates with a user and is placed on the Web, it is uploaded. When an image already is on the Web and someone clicks on it, perhaps saving it, that is a download. Scott Wells has said he received a Facebook file from a woman in Tennessee (apparently Kara Adkins) and clicked on it without knowing what it was and without asking for it. When he saw the image, he thought it was the woman's daughter, that the mother essentially was enticing Facebook users with pornographic images of her own child. Wells has said he forwarded the image to the daughter in an effort to alert her about the mother's unlawful acts. Federal prosecutors now claim this act of alerting a victim amounts to distribution of child porn.

Brady Musgrave
So, prosecutors don't seem to know the difference between an upload and a download, and that alone might be grounds to dismiss the case because the feds' narrative appears to misstate the facts of the case. But the feds' much bigger problem can be found in the green highlighted areas above.

In No. 8, the affidavit states that Wells "uploaded" the first file on "December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 hours UTC."  In No. 9, the affidavit states that Wells "uploaded" the second file -- a different file, with a different file name -- on "December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 hours UTC."

The feds have charged Scott Wells with "uploading" two separate suspect files -- and he did both at the exact same time, right down to the second. I took enough physics in high school to know that can't be done. David Copperfield couldn't do it, so Scott Wells -- who is almost legally blind in one eye and must use a walker from the effects of a benign brain tumor -- certainly couldn't do it.

That leaves this question: Will Brady Musgrave, Wells' third court-appointed attorney -- take the necessary steps to get the charges dismissed and his client freed from more than two years of wrongful incarceration? We intend to find out. Another question: How did U.S. prosecutor James Kelleher let the Wells case get so far without noticing that it alleges an offense that is physically impossible to commit. As a "minister of justice" under Missouri law, will Kelleher do the right thing and dismiss the case -- maybe even helping Scott Wells receive the compensation to which he is entitled, under federal law, for having two years of his life stolen.? Is Kelleher capable of doing the right thing? We intend to find out about that, too.

BTW, this is not the only ground upon which the Wells case -- as a matter of law -- must be dismissed. We will discuss another one in an upcoming post.

(To be continued)


Anonymous said...

Good Lord! Just yesterday, we read about a corrupt prosecutor, the horrible woman in Hawaii who framed her own relative. Now, we've got an incompetent prosecutor who can't even draw up a criminal complaint that has any basis in reality.

Anonymous said...

Prosecutors, we have a problem. Your complaint says Mr. Wells uploaded one image at December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 hours UTC, and uploaded a second, distinct image at December 15, 2016, at 15:18:55 hours UTC -- both from the same IP address.

Sorry, dudes, but that can't be done.

Anonymous said...

This prosecutor, Mr. Kelleher, needs to be fired. Then he needs to be investigated and convicted for obstruction of justice and conspiracy, preferably housed in the same federal prison as the woman from Hawaii.

Anonymous said...

This is why detention of innocent people is not such a great idea, except maybe in the case of violent offenses with legit evidence.

Anonymous said...

Prosecutors know the public tends to view those charged with child-porn offenses as guilty, so they can be lazy and arrogant about handling these cases. This just happens to be the rare instance where their laziness and arrogant have come to light.

Anonymous said...

This is the deal...I am a family member of Scott Wells and I have been informed by BOTH of his past attorneys that they have no forensic evidence showing that Scott sent anything to anyone on Facebook, which completely defeats the narrative in the probable cause statement. I myself have been jailed for things that I did not do and was informed by the judge that I got three of his best friends (Judges)in trouble with a federal investigation that I got started into my county. He stated that I needed to realize that I had authority over me and that he didn't care if I rotted in the basement of his jail...."BECAUSE I EXERCISED MY RIGHTS". I guess if his friends hadn't broken the law they would not have been repremanded. However, no matter how many times they broke the law in my case, the Commission of Retirement and Removal of Judges was a rubber stamp for them and John Waters still got to retire with full benefits. I might add, that this assumed judge had hit on me for years and was rejected...John Waters is another worthless human being that was one of the good ole boys. My ex boyfriend is an attorney and he told me that they hated Waters so bad in college that they poisoned him with mercury, hence why he has no hair on his entire body...so Ive been told. I have much more to write about Scott's case, such as question that I asked to Mr. Musgrave in an email. Instead of answering my questions inquiring of the statements by past attorneys that there was no evidence showing that Scott contacted anyone on Facebook as the probable cause statement alleges, my email was not answered but Scott was taken to the Federal courthouse, in a tiny little room and was met by his attorney Brady Musgrave and prosecutor James Kellerer. In this meeting, Scott was shown a picture such as something taken off the web. He was then threatened by James Kellerer that if he did not make a plea deal that he was going after him for 20 years and he would have to serve 85% of that time. This all being done with his attorney Brady Musgrave. olks that is a best a huge "Color of Law' violation. So instead of his attorney answering my email, he participates in a shake down of Scott. oh but hey, James Kellerer stated that he had no prejudice against Scott, you know, outside the fact that Scott was suing David Schuler for legal malpractice in a past case and guess who he was calling as a professional witness on his behalf??? you got it, his buddy James Kellerer who was the prosecutor on that case and lost big time to a real attorney outside of this county that actually works for his clients and is not bought out by the local good ole boys. However, I do think that they got to Dan Dodson too and someone paid off the attorney that would have won Scotts case against David SChuler. I doubt Brady Musgrave has even opened Scotts case file because he is working for the prosecution, not his client. No prejudice there right??? More to come later.

legalschnauzer said...

@9:31 --

Thanks for your insights. It's troubling that James Kelleher would think it is his business to threaten and harass Scott Wells. It's even more troubling that Brady Musgrave would sit right there and let it happen.

To say, "If you don't do this (plead guilty), I'm going to do this to you," sounds a whole like extortion. If Kelleher's case is so strong, why is he resorting to tactics like this.

Your comment about David Shuler, my brother, certainly hits home. Why would David, who had been acting as a criminal defense attorney (a role for which he is horribly ill suited) think the prosecutor in the case (James Kelleher) could be an expert witness for him. In general, expert witness are supposed to be "similarly situated" to the defendant in a malpractice case. Kelleher was absolutely not similarly situated to David Shuler. Makes me wonder if David had any expert testimony lined up for that case. I haven't seen any in the public record, which means Scott Wells should have won that lawsuit by default -- except that his STL -based attorney (John J. Allan) bailed out at the last minute, claiming he needed more money. Gee, I wonder how that happened. BTW, the Missouri Bar has disciplined Mr. Allan on multiple occasions.

legalschnauzer said...

BTW, J. Miles Sweeney was the other expert witness David Shuler had listed. Sweeney is an arbitrator and mediator in Springfield, a former judge and seemingly a reputable guy. Not sure if he ever gave testimony in support of David's actions in "defending" Scott Wells.

e.a.f. said...

if it weren't for the man being in jail this would be funny,. I don't know the difference between up loading or down loading but if they're prosecutors dealing with computer crimes they really do need to step it up a notch. Oh, well it is the U.S.A. and there are some really dumbies in office, starting with the orange blob.

some times law enforcement digs itself in and isn't smart enough to know when to cut its loses. We've had cases like that in Canada, but usually the judge throws it out. Of course Canadian judges aren't elected, have a mandatory retirement date, and can be removed by a panel of other judges. Oh, and some judges have been removed from the bench for not being aware it is this century.

Anonymous said...

The term "upload" ALSO simply means that you transfer or send one file from a database to another database by means of computer or other device...and from YOUR own words, that is exactly what Wells did. Why would any grown man forward a pornographic image of a child, to that specific child when its obvious they are underage and use the excuse it was "to warn her?" Why does a child that young have a facebook account and how would Wells KNOW who she even was or know her account info? Makes no sense and That in itself raises red flags. IF you were legally saavy about the laws, you would know that in this Federal type of case they can hold a suspect for 5 years before charging them...2 years is legal,so thats another error in your knowledge. There is a law called "Attorney client privelage" and the legal counsel for the accused is held by law to NEVER discuss his client or the case with anyone, even family...and that includes after the death of client. Discussing a case can lead to being disbarred, so Im unsure what you expect. Sometimes it is exactly what it is and not everything is a conspiracy...you seem to claim that every single person in the legal system is corrupt or being "paid off" and it is ridiculous. That shows extreme paranoia...Maybe you should seek mental health advice

legalschnauzer said...

@12:15 --

A few thoughts and questions:

(1) Where did you get your definition of an upload? Can you provide a link to that definition, so we know the source?

(2) What words of mine indicate Scott Wells uploaded the image? Most of the words I use come straight from the criminal complaint.

(3) How do you know Wells forwarded it to the child? Who is Kara Adkins -- the child or the mother? That's not clear to me. How is it obvious the child is underage? If the prosecution knows that why does it not provide her age. Wells is quoted in the complaint as saying he thought she was 19. I see nothing in the complaint to counter that. I see no proof in the complaint that any of the so-called children are minors.

(4) People are supposed to be indicted and detained for two years because of "red flags"? You seem to admit the evidence against Wells is sketchy, at best. Why doesn't the government provide evidence that Wells sought to have the image sent to him? That goes to a knowing mindset, and it's central to the offense -- to show Wells took "affirmative actions" to receive the image. The govt. offers zero evidence that he asked to have the image sent to him.

(5) Why don't you cite to the law on detention? Where did that come from? I didn't say the two years is illegal. I said it's not supported by probable cause, and it isn't.

(6) Please add a citation to your description of attorney-client privilege. Your saying an attorney can't discuss a case with family members and friends, even when he has the client's permission to do so? Where did you get that notion and why does it matter to you?

(7) Are you planning to file a bar complaint against Brady Musgrave?

(8) Why don't you discuss the main point of the post -- that Scott Wells is charged with an "offense" that is physically impossible for him to commit? You know there is no viable charge against Wells, and the case must be dismissed as a matter of law, right? That's why you avoid that topic?

(9) Why don't you contact me, ID yourself, and I would be glad to discuss further? If you want to call, I will be glad to give me my number. My email address is on the front page of the blog. Funny, I'm the one who is paranoid, but you are the one afraid to give your name or support any of your assertions with citations to actual law or fact.