WILLIAMSPORT — A Northumberland man previously accused of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl faces new accusations in federal court of producing child pornography.
Following a grand jury investigation and federal indictment, Howard Miller III, 54, of Ninth Street, pleaded not guilty on March 9 to one federal count of production of child pornography. Miller is scheduled for jury selection at 9:30 a.m. May 1 in Courtroom 1 on the fourth floor of the U.S. Courthouse and Federal Building, 240 W. Third St., Williamsport.
According to federal documents, Miller allegedly “did employ, use, persuade, induce, entice, and coerce a minor, to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing visual depictions of such conduct, and such visual depictions were produced using materials that had been mailed, shipped, and transported in interstate and foreign commerce” on or about Aug. 10 in Northumberland County.
The criminal affidavit that contains the details of the case is sealed by U.S. Magistrate Judge William I. Arbuckle. It “contains information regarding potential co-defendants and cooperating witnesses,” according to the prosecution.
Arbuckle on March 9 ordered that Miller be detained. The defense counsel reserves the right to seek bail at a later date, according to court documents.
Miller was previously charged in August after the parent of the child arrived at the barracks and told troopers she found concerning messages in her daughter’s phone from Miller, according to police.
Troopers viewed the phone and said they discovered photographs of the man performing sexual acts, troopers said.
The child told troopers the incidents occurred at a home in Coal Township on at least four occasions and that Miller told the alleged victim he could be like her father, according to police.
Troopers then spoke to Miller who allegedly said he fell in love with the girl and saw himself as a father figure, according to troopers.
Miller then confessed he had sex with the alleged victim on two occasions, troopers said.
The interactions took place between Feb. 1 and Aug. 7, 2022, police said.
Miller was charged with six felony counts of rape of child, aggravated indecent assault, involuntary deviant sexual intercourse with a child, corruption of minors, statutory sexual assault and child pornography.
Miller has no upcoming court dates scheduled for this case.