Edmonton… A Captain with the Edmonton Fire Rescue Service has been charged with child sexual exploitation offences following an investigation by ALERT’s Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) unit.
Christopher McDonald was arrested on January 16, 2024 with the help of the Morinville RCMP. The 54-year-old man is charged with possession of child pornography, accessing child pornography, making available child pornography, and two counts of unsafe storage of a firearm.
ICE began its investigation into McDonald in October 2023 following reports of a suspect sharing high volumes of child sexual exploitation materials online.
“Given the position of authority and the role firefighters have in the community, it is concerning that the suspect is accessing and distributing child sexual abuse material,” said Const. Scott Sterling, ALERT ICE.
A number of computers and electronic devices were seized from McDonald’s home, which are now being examined to collect further evidence. During the search of his home several firearms were located, which were not being properly stored.
While the investigation and charges are related to online offences, the nature of McDonald’s employment placed him in a position of trust and authority. ICE is encouraging anyone with information about this case to come forward and contact police. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact local police or Crime Stoppers (1-800-222-TIPS).
McDonald was released from custody on a number of court-imposed conditions, and is awaiting his next scheduled court appearance on February 15, 2024 in Morinville, Alta.
ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime.