York County man had Internet child porn photos of kids as young as 3, police say

A York County man who had Internet child porn of victims involved in sex acts as young as age 3 has been arrested by sheriff’s deputies.

Duncan Wolf McLaren, 21, of Sharon, was arrested late Wednesday on six felony charges of sexual exploitation of minor, according to arrest warrants obtained by The Herald. McLaren faces one count of second-degree exploitation and five counts of third-degree sexual exploitation.

McLaren faces as much as 60 years in prison if convicted of all charges.

York County deputies Bob Hamilton and Alex Clark started investigating in July after a Cyber tip about possible child pornography being uploaded to the social media site Tumblr, according to a sheriff’s office report.

Deputies received a search warrant for McLaren’s home, and he admitted the Tumblr account was his, the report stated. Deputies seized several cellphones at the home.

A compilation-style photo of one girl had been downloaded to McLaren’s phone, arrest warrants show. That picture was shared, resulting in a second-degree charge, arrest warrants state.

Under South Carolina law, second-degree exploitation charges involve either recording or distribution of the material. A conviction for second-degree exploitation carries a mandatory two years in prison, up to 10 years.

According to the warrants, McLaren also had pictures of minors, ages 3 to teen, involved in sex acts with adults.

Each conviction for third-degree exploitation can carry up to 10 years in prison but has no minimum penalty.

The arrest was made as part of S.C. Attorney General Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force initiative, deputies said. The ICAC task force has made dozens of arrests in 2019 in South Carolina in cases that target suspects involved in online child pornography.

McLaren remains in the York County jail under a $45,000 bond, records show.

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Andrew Dys covers breaking news and public safety for The Herald, where he has been a reporter and columnist since 2000. He has won 51 South Carolina Press Association awards for his coverage of crime, race, justice, and people. He is author of the book “Slice of Dys” and his work is in the U.S. Library of Congress.