Firefighter Resigns to Avoid Jail Time

By: Cyndi Murray Email
By: Cyndi Murray Email

A Parkersburg firefighter has resigned to avoid possible jail time on charges of child pornography.

James Kelley resigned from the Parkersburg Fire Department last week, according to Parkersburg Fire Chief Eric Taylor.

Wood County Prosecutor Jason Wharton says Kelley was arrested and arraigned in August 2010 for felony charges of possession of child pornography.

Back in 2008 the 38-year-old allegedly videotape himself and a teen-aged girl engaging in sexual activity.

Kelley plead guilty to a misdemeanor offense of unlawful invasion of privacy as part of a plea deal and is currently on probation.

He is prohibited from contacting the victim, but will not have to register as a sex offender.


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  • by josh Location: pkg on Sep 28, 2011 at 02:12 PM
    this is a complete outrage, no doubt. but, if he were a police officer, you can bet it would have been even more outrageous. he still wouldn't have went to jail and they probably would have cooked up some entrapment charge and put the girl in jail. the public officiating in this city these days is a far cry from those of decades passed. it has nothing to do with anything but money and social status now. if you have alot of money to throw around, or have a public job (usually, both go hand in hand) you are considerably less likely to be given as extreme a sentence as someone on the opposite side of the fence. heck, in most cases they aren't even arrested. people need to get together on this and get things straightened out again. word.
  • by hip hop anonymous Location: almost hvn on Sep 27, 2011 at 05:29 PM
    this does not reflect well on the parkersburg fire department. the fire department has nothing to do with it except the fact that he was given pardon for being a firefighter. stop flaming against firefighters and take this issue up with our congressmen and senators since the local authorities dont care
  • by Ron on Sep 27, 2011 at 02:44 PM
    I believe his wife was 16 when he started pursuing her,He was 25 sound familiar?????
  • by BS Location: Vienna on Sep 27, 2011 at 01:48 PM
    There is no crime for having consensual sex with a 17 year old in WV (or 16 for that matter). His crime, if there was one, was that he filmed it (if she was still 17 at the time). That apparently is what can't be proven. No need to register as a sex ofender if he is not one.
  • by Anonymous on Sep 27, 2011 at 05:28 AM
    Wow so many comments on here about different stories. Seems like everyone knows the facts but they are so many different ones. I hear she was 14 then 17? I hear this and that. The one thing I don't understand is how he can avoid being registered as a sex offender?
  • by Jason Location: Vienna on Sep 26, 2011 at 01:21 PM
    This story is outrageous but, will probably fade quickly. That is what the prosecutor is banking on.
  • by TA Location: Parkersburg on Sep 26, 2011 at 10:04 AM
    to wood county prosecutor you was voted in office to uphold the law not make new ones for city workers he needs to go to jail and register as sex offender .I will not vote for you ever agian
  • by Joe on Sep 26, 2011 at 04:52 AM
    You have got to be freaking kidding me,This is just crazy that this man literally got by with this,We have always taught our children to go to policeman or fireman when in trouble,we better start teaching them something else,there is probably many men sitting in jail for the same thing this fireman did,they should be set free too,why should they have to pay and he doesnt.It is so unfair that if you work for the city or have money for a good lawyer ,you walk but the ones who had court appointed lawyers are sitting in jail,I am not defending them but why should this guy sit at home and others are sitting in a jail cell,it shows what kind of judicial system we have,and a $100.00 fine is crazy,and having to resign ,boy thats a punishment,what a shame on all who helped him walk free.
  • by Jason Location: Vienna on Sep 25, 2011 at 08:31 PM
    Can anyone recall Wharton prosecuting a case himself since being in office ?
  • by tara Location: parkersburg on Sep 25, 2011 at 05:58 PM
    You have got to be kidding me?This means if you work for our city and have a fling with a minor ,you get a $100.00 fine,oh let a construction worker,or gas attendent do something,he would get 5-10 years,Our judicial system has once again that it sucks,if you have the money for a good lawyer then you get a slap on the hand if you dont have the money,guess what?your doing time,I dont care what he was,fireman,doctor,policeman,he should be doing time up in the regional jail like all the others.
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