April 9, 2013

Man charged with child exploitation

From Staff Reports

— A Rocky Face man has been charged with sexual exploitation of a child and pandering after authorities say he gave money to an underage girl for a photo of her exposed breasts.

Mark Lee Baker, 43, of 690 Sam Love Road, Rocky Face, was charged Tuesday by the Dalton Police Department. Spokesman Bruce Frazier said Baker turned himself in at the Whitfield County jail that day.

The investigation, Frazier said, began in late October when someone with knowledge of the case reported a suspicion Baker was involved with a girl who was 16 at the time. While the “age of consent” for sexual acts with an adult is 16 in Georgia, Frazier said state law still makes it illegal to own sexually explicit photos of anyone under 18. The pandering charge relates to giving money for a sexual act, Frazier said, and that act is illegal regardless of age.

He said investigators don’t believe any violence was involved.