KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Knoxville police officer facing federal child pornography charges has been fired, Police Chief Paul Noel announced Monday.
Dan Roark, 47, was arrested last week on charges involving the production of child pornography after an investigation by U.S. Homeland Security, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and others. His police powers were suspended and he appeared in federal court in Knoxville on Monday, Nov. 6.
Chief Noel announced Monday that Roark, who had worked for the department since 2007, was fired following an internal investigation.
“Roark’s alleged actions are shocking and beyond comprehension.Police Chief Paul Noel
The Office of Professional Standards conducted an investigation based upon the evidence that was presented in the federal complaint and during his initial appearance and detention hearing in federal court. A pre-disciplinary hearing was held today to review that evidence and the decision was made to terminate his employment, effective immediately.
I appreciate OPS for working through our internal, administrative investigation as quickly and thoroughly as possible. We will continue to cooperate fully with the ongoing federal investigation.
“I extend my deepest sympathies to the child victimized by his actions, who has undoubtedly suffered unimaginable trauma.”
An investigation first began after the Scott County, Virginia Sheriff’s Department received an anonymous tip that a juvenile victim had been sending explicit material online.
Roark was found to have been in contact with the juvenile and their mother through a search of the victim’s phone. The affidavit states the woman was paid by Roark, who she claimed to know as Dan Thomas, for the images she provided to him.