Evidence suppressed in child porn case

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AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV)— On Monday, evidence was suppressed in a child pornography case in Augusta County.

Damian Eutsler, 32, of Stuarts Draft, allegedly possessed and downloaded child pornography.

Damian Eutsler is facing nearly 100 child pornography charges. Eutlser was arrested back in December 2016 after a Lynchburg detective contacted Augusta County about a download on a cellphone in the area. The cell phone was connected to Eutsler.

In October 2018, Eutsler's defense attorney filed a motion to suppress the hard drive. The defense said police violated Eutler's rights when they looked at it without a warrant. At the time, the judge did not make a decision. Motions were heard about whether Eutsler's defense had the standing to try and suppress the evidence.

On Monday, a judge decided to suppress the hard drive. According to Augusta County Commonwealth's Atttorney Tim Martin, the judge said too much time had passed between the seizure of the hard drive and the request for a warrant.

Martin said the the impact of evidence suppression in a case varies, but in this case, the hard drive was a key piece of evidence. He added the frequency of suppression in cases varies.

"The exclusionary rule is well established here," Martin said. "And I can tell you it's with regularity."

Martin said his office will decide internally how to move forward on the case involving the hard drive, but Eutsler is still on trial for the case with the cell phone. That is scheduled for February 2020.