NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (NEWS10) — A retired detective captain with the Massachusetts State Police has been indicted in connection with allegedly possessing child pornography, Attorney General Maura Healey announced on Thursday. Francis Hart, 62, of Amherst, was indicted by a Hampshire County Grand Jury on charges of dissemination of child pornography and possession of child pornography. He will be arraigned on the charges in Hampshire Superior Court at a later date.

State Police assigned to the Cyber Crimes Unit and the AG’s Office began an investigation in January 2021 after a representative with the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children told them an email address registered to Hart had uploaded a file containing several images of suspected child pornography. The investigation also revealed that in addition to possessing images, Hart sent images of alleged child pornography to another iPhone user in another state, according to police.

Hart was arrested in August 2021 at his Amherst home. While carrying out a search warrant, police seized various digital devices including two different desktop computers, external hard drives, and an iPhone. While looking through the devices, officers allegedly found several images of child pornography.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant Attorney General Vanessa Madge of AG Healey’s Criminal Bureau and Special Assistant Attorney General Stephanie Jiminez, with assistant from Massachusetts State Police assigned to the AG’s Office, Massachusetts State Police Cyber Crimes and Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, Amherst Police, and the AG’s Digital Evidence Laboratory.