Former Homicide Detective Sentenced to Seven and a Half Years’ Prison For Sexual Exploitation

PHOENIX – – Richard Michael Polk, 51, of Surprise, Ariz. was sentenced Monday to seven and a half years in the Arizona Department of Corrections followed by lifetime supervised probation with sex offender terms and sex offender registration, by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge John Hannah.

On April 3, 2009, the defendant pleaded guilty to two counts of Attempted Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, both Class 3 Felonies and Dangerous Crimes Against Children. Polk was originally charged with 10 counts of Sexual Exploitation of a Minor, all Class 2 Felonies and Dangerous Crimes Against Children. Polk was discovered purchasing child pornography off of the Internet. A search of his home office revealed that Polk had been downloading and saving child pornography to external hard drives and loose media since at least 2006. He possessed thousands of images and videos of child pornography, including videos of children engaged in sexual explicit conduct. Polk was a homicide detective with the Phoenix Police Department at the time, but retired upon learning of the allegations.

The investigation in this case was conducted by the Phoenix Police Department and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The prosecution was handled by Dimitra Sampson, Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Arizona who was cross-deputized as a Special Deputy County Attorney because the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office recused itself from the case.

CASE NUMBER: CR 2008-126774-001-DT

RELEASE NUMBER: 2009-195(Polk)

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