Nelsen: Edges state case could be dropped after federal sentences

Published 10:38 am Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Anthony and Deborah Edge likely won’t face further state charges once they’re sentenced for producing child pornography.

Anthony Edge

Anthony Edge

The Austin couple entered guilty pleas this month to federal charges as part of a plea agreement that dropped 10 of the combined 11 counts against them. Anthony, 35, faces at least 25 years in prison while Deborah faces at least 15 years in prison.

Though Mower County Attorney Kristen Nelsen hadn’t reviewed the federal case as of Tuesday, she said county attorneys would likely drop the case against the Edges in state court.

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According to Nelsen, the county attorney’s office only pursues cases against offenders who also have federal charges if those offenders would face a harsher punishment under state law.

“In these child pornography cases, the feds can get substantially more [jail] time,” she said.

Federal presentencing investigations for the Edges will soon start, after which the federal court will set sentencing dates.

Deborah Edge

Deborah Edge

The Edges were charged in state court in April 2014 after authorities raided the Edge home in late March 2014. State and local authorities were tipped off by The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children about child pornography on the chat website Omegle.

Investigators would later find several recordings of a 15-year-old using a shower, as well as two videos involving Deborah and a 6-year-old.

Authorities said during Anthony’s hearing Monday they found thousands of images and 27 videos of child pornography on the Edges’ computer.

Anthony previously registered as a sex offender after he was convicted in 2006 of possessing nude pictures of minors. He was charged in 2004 in Olmsted County after police found about 2,300 images of child pornography on a computer he left behind at a former residence.

The Edges have already lost parental rights to their four children. Deborah voluntarily gave up her rights in July, while a judge stripped Anthony of his rights in October.