Former Air Force officer indicted in Georgia after child exploitation sting
By ZACHARY HANSEN | The Atlanta Journal-Constitution | Published: May 4, 2019
(Tribune News Service) — A former Air Force lieutenant colonel and ex-member of the Georgia Air National Guard was indicted Thursday after being arrested in Marietta during an FBI sex sting in December.
Willie Newson was indicted on one count of violating the Computer or Electronic Pornography and Child Exploitation Prevention Act, Cobb County court records show.
He is accused of trying to meet a 14-year-old on a dating app, but the teen was actually an undercover officer for the FBI's Metro Atlanta Child Exploitation Task Force, AJC.com previously reported.
Newson was previously placed on leave pending the outcome of the investigation, Georgia Department of Defense spokeswoman Desiree Bamba said previously. Georgia Air National Guard spokeswoman Maj. Pamela Stauffer confirmed he's no longer a member of the military.
Newson previously commanded the 165th Communication Flight of the 165th Airlift Wing.
He was arrested at the Radisson at 1775 Parkway Place in Marietta on Dec. 1. An arrest warrant obtained by Channel 2 Action News said the undercover officer "gave Newson the opportunity to stop communicating several times."
Newson previously bailed himself out for $20,000. The Georgia National Guard has a base in Marietta that was marked as Newson's address in Cobb County's jail records.
Correction: An earlier version of this story referred to the suspect as a high-ranking active Air Force officer. Lieutenant colonel is a mid-rank officer, and he is no longer a member of the military.
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