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Daniel Biles, Former Bunnell Teacher’s Aide, Sentenced to 7 Years on Child Porn Charges

| January 24, 2013

Daniel Biles, in court this afternoon, held--and read--the Bible as he waited his turn. (c FlaglerLive)

Daniel Biles, in court this afternoon, held–and read–the Bible as he waited his turn. (c FlaglerLive)

Daniel Biles, 39, was for years a Bunnell Elementary school teacher aide, who lived across the street from the school, on his parents’ property on North Palmetto Avenue. Last April, he was arrested on 10 charges of possessing child pornography. Two months later, after making $20,000 bail, he was rearrested on 14 additional charges. He posted $28,000 bail. The State Attorney’s office eventually charged him on 20 counts.

He was in court Thursday afternoon, appearing before Flagler County Circuit Judge J. David Walsh to plead no contest to 20 counts.

Walsh, following the recommendation by the state, sentenced him to seven years in prison (with only eight days’ credit for time served). Biles will be designated a sex offender. And he will be on sex-ofender probation for five years after his release. He will also pay some court costs.

Each count is a third-degree felony. The 20 separate counts combined could have potentially yielded a sentence of 100 years in prison, had he gone to trial and been convicted.

As the judge and the lawyers discussed the plea agreement and the technicalities surrounding Biles’s designation as a sex offender (it has to be a verbal order by the judge), Biles stood to his attorney’s right, leaning on the lectern, holding a burgundy-colored Bible which he’d been reading, on and off, while waiting his turn for three hours alongside several family members. As Walsh asked him question after question–the routine questions asked every defendant submitting a plea–Biles answered in a subdued voice, his words breaking on occasion.

“It’s not the end of your life. You’ll get through this, all right?” the judge, in an almost fatherly tone, told Biles, a slight man who appeared shocked by the sentence, even though he knew what he was pleading to.

“You might want to leave that here,” Walsh said, referring to the Bible, which Biles did not want to part with. Without his book, he was then ushered to area of the courtroom where inmates are fingerprinted. Bils was swabbed for a DNA sample, handcuffed, and–as he fought back tears, looked at the ceiling and mouthed the word “Mom” repeatedly as he looked back at his family–was taken into custody through a side door.

Throughout his recent years at Bunnell Elementary, Biles had received little short of glowing evaluations from Bunnell Principal Richard Dupont and, before him, from Principal Phyllis Pearson. Biles had also worked for the district’s adult education program, in its extended-day system and in summer camps. He was placed on paid administrative leave immediately after his first arrest, which took place near the end of the school year. He was not re-hired the following fall.

Biles was arrested by the Bunnell Police Department after a joint investigation with the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and the State Attorney’s office. Biles had taken his computer to a repair shop in Bunnell, where shop techniciens somehow found images of naked children stored on the computer’s hard drive.

Biles had had a brush with the law before, on related issues. In 2003, when he was 30, Biles was accused of inappropriately touching at least two boys at Miss Dawn’s Lil Kountry Kids Preschool and Day Care Center, where Biles worked. Randy Burke, then a sergeant with the Bunnell Police Department (he’s now a lieutenant) investigated the case, and was on record saying that he believed there was a case. But after the Department of Children and Families recorded video statements by the children, the case was dropped for insufficient evidence.

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22 Responses for “Daniel Biles, Former Bunnell Teacher’s Aide, Sentenced to 7 Years on Child Porn Charges”

  1. Kathryn A. Lopez says:

    Justice served but not served enough. Let’s pray for peace in our City of Bunnell and for the children of Bunnell Elementary over all these years of uncertainty.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not enough? 7 years in a Florida prison is no cake walk. Then, when he gets out, he will have the brand for life. He won’t be able to get a job and will end up living on the dole. If he’s lucky, he will find a cozy home in the woods somewhere. Not apologizing for him, but let’s face it, he didn’t hurt anybody. People are sentenced to far less for crimes with actual victims, causing real harm to other people or their property. Targeting possession doesn’t rescue a single child, all it does is justify exorbitant law enforcement budgets, bureaucracy and incursions on freedoms. Nothing will change until the focus shifts to the producers, similar to how drug enforcement is conducted.

      • LONGMAN says:

        Anonymous- he didn’t hurt anyone? Crimes with actual victims? Think of those kids at the other end of the camera.

        • Anonymous says:

          The viewing of child porn over the internet has seem to become the focus of law enforcement rather than making of child porn. Seems it’s easier to bust and embarrass someone who has a history of pictures on their computer than it is to make the effort to stop the morons that make this crap to begin with. There will of course be the people who deny this statement, but there are plenty of cases where people were busted for “producing child porn” when it was nothing more than teenagers sexting or parents innocently taking pictures of their kids in the bathtub. If you are serious about stopping child porn, you should be critical of the way the budget is being squandered on the low-hanging fruit. Become informed and demand better results from government.

      • Jennifer says:

        didnt hurt anybody,well have you ever been the parent of a child that has been molested? how would you like it if one of your children were one of the ones on this SICKO computer just because he looked at them doesnt mean they weren’t hurt just by him looking at them he is hurting them he may not be touching them but in order for him to get those pics some one had to hurt them,. HOW DARE YOU think that 7 yrs is long enough, he should have gotten a charge for all the counts and got the max what is wrong with our court system . He needs to ROT IN HELL

  2. FPCstudent says:

    I remember Mr.Danny from when I was a STUDENT at BES, he was always very nice and I would have never expected this from him.

    This is so sad..

    • FCSB employee says:

      I worked with Danny when he worked in Pre-K and thought he was a great guy, very funny, conscientious worker. I’m shocked at all this. It breaks my heart! My prayers go out to all affected, including Danny and his family.

  3. mellissa says:

    Very well said Kathy, I agree. It frightens me that he had so many innocent kids looking up to him,and played with them and had everyone trusting him all those years. Thank the lord that he was caught as i wish they all could be. Its a parents greatest fear that someone harms their child and he has scarred them forever so i dont agree with the 7 year sentence, he should be there for the rest of his life just as those kids and their families are now scarred for life..

    • Anonymous says:

      you are obviously missing the reduction to 3rd degree because he did not hurt anyone! I worked with Danny for years and he never put himself in a position to be personal with any of the children…look on your own computer and see the sights your husband or boyfriend search…God be with Danny for his grace and be with you for your sins of judging lest yee be judged…

  4. Popo3984 says:

    Good job Bunnell pd

  5. Kurt says:

    i work at the school and I know Officer Wolfe worked this case like a true pro. thank God for officers like him that help get these predators off the streets and out of our schools!

  6. pc says:

    will he receive mental health care and/or counseling?

  7. ANONYMOUSAY says:

    What’s the sense of holding a Bible if your hand if you don’t read it or follow whats in it.

  8. Geezer says:

    I met his mother, and she’s a lovely person.
    I am so sorry for the anguish she’s experiencing.
    And what a horror for the parents of the children that were under his tutelage.

    Who can you trust with your kids?

  9. Magnolia says:

    I wonder how many more in this community could be arrested for the pictures we have on our computers. I’m not excusing what he was charged with. But 7 years in prison isn’t going to change the situation. He will get out.

    He needs HELP, not prison. Chances are this man was molested as a child. We have a sick society and we’re not doing anything about it. Locking people up will not solve the problem. The judge knows that.

    We have children sexually abusing other children in school. This is NOT normal behavior. Prison isn’t going to stop it. The chances of him repeating the offense are high. What are we doing about that?

    • LONGMAN says:

      You are right Magnolia, 7 years in prison won’t change the fact that Mr. Biles likes looking at naked pictures of kids. At least us parents will know that he won’t be able to hurt any kids for the next few years while in prison.

  10. shocked says:

    I’ve known Danny since high school and I’m in total shock. Being around him you would never know he was this way. Just goes to show you just never really know someone.

  11. I know nothing of this case. I’m not defending anyone, but take this as a PSA, a service to you and your kids:

    Do you or anyone you know use Torrents or other Peer-to-Peer (P2P) software to download anything? Then this may happen to you! Yep, that’s all it takes. Greater than 70% of kids have, at some point, used software like this to illegally download software, music, movies and sometimes use torrents and other systems to simply access legal pornography by downloading it illegally. Here’s the problem with many of these applications…

    They function on a system of trading. In other words, in order to get the files you want, you need to have files others want. It’s the only sure way to greatly increase the likelihood of actually finding what you’re looking for.

    So what these systems do is rate files my how desirable they are to others using the system. They do this by counting the number of searches there are for specific content. Then, when popular items are available, these systems will AUTOMATICALLY DOWNLOAD THEM to your computer, in some cases without your knowledge, in an effort to give you something valuable to share/trade, again, increasing the likelihood that you’ll successfully get whatever you’re looking for.

    To make matters worse, many of the files torrent users ultimately download DON’T contain what they were looking for. They contain viruses, porn, child-porn, malware and all sort of other stuff you obviously don’t want. But once it’s on your computer DELETING IT ISN’T ENOUGH!

    If you delete these files, they can still be recovered. If you format your hard drive, they can still be recovered. If you format your hard drive 10 times, they can still be recovered.

    The reality is that ANYONE that has ever obtained files using these methods could probably be put in prison for the same charge. If not because of something you’re doing then because of something your kids are doing or your friends or roommates.

    While it should not be okay to have child pornography the law doesn’t take “how the world works” into account. Things have changed and now, perhaps for the first time in our history, ignorance IS a reasonable excuse for a violation of the law.

    How many times have you clicked on a site link only to end up with 30 web browser windows opened with porn all over them? When it happens, most close them quickly and don’t notice what every one of them contains… Now imagine that one of those sites contained child porn. Every image on that site has now been transferred to your computer and there is virtually no way to remove their imprint.

    Does that make you a child pornographer?
    Talk to your kids and friends and made sure they understand how unbelievably dangerous this stuff can be. A simple mistake or curiosity, handled poorly, can literally cost you your life.

    This isn’t me being alarmist. It’s a fact and everyone is vulnerable. Fact is if this was you, you would be guilty. Would you risk 100 years in prison or would you just take it on the chin to keep some portion of your life? I’d go no contest in a second.

    Again, I’m not defending this guy. I don’t know what happened. I’m just answering Magnolia’s question.
    Probably 30% of us could be locked up at any second and see a similar sentence if not worse.

    Last point: What child porn consumer has 20 pics? Only 20? That makes no sense! Do a search on your teenaged boy’s computer for “*.jpg” and count how many there are with nude folks in them. If it’s less than 1000 I’d be shocked. (Yes, I’m generalizing, but you get the point.)

    • LONGMAN says:

      Wow, lots of people defending this pedophile.

      So I guess the incident in 2003 at the day care was all a misunderstanding as well??

      Wake up, he got what he deserved.

    • Ariana386 says:

      This is truth! A family friend was using Torrents, and went to a site (other than TPB) and downloaded what he thought was a DVD-rip of a bootleg of a movie that was just released in theaters…. When he went to view it after it was finished, he had three porno-cartoons that were downloaded instead! Not what he was banking on!

      I’m not saying it doesn’t serve him right, trying to pirate movies. LOL But he never signed on for those cartoon pornos. And it could have been worse. It could have been a virus that gave him the “blue-screen-of-death”….

  12. Tech says:

    Hi John Hardison,

    With torrents you can view all files contained in the torrent before you even start downloading them. Google search “Torrent Download” and the first page of results are to perfectly reputable and safe torrent sites and torrent information.

    Torrent’s on a safe site are filled with user comments that have downloaded the file and confirmed multiple times the legitimacy and virus free content of the file.

    You are lumping torrents in with P2P clients like “Soulseek” and I would agree that P2P clients like Soulseek are very unsafe for novice’s.

    Aside from that, an IT expert/computer forensics expert, could easily tell if the files were downloaded intentionally or unintentionally.

    Here’s an example.
    1. Unintentional = Pics found in “Temp” or Cache folders. File names like 1AX4$5B.jpg (In most cases this would be clear that the files were unintentionally transferred to the PC by the browser.)

    2. Intentional = Pics found in “C:\Documents and Settings\Username\My Documents\My Pictures\Stuff” The pictures are named using a naming convention similar to non-offending personal pictures also in the same directory.

    In this case it was clear that the user downloaded these files, moved them to a specific folder and named the pics similar to other non-offending picture file names.

    You can format your hard drive using a block level format tool such as Active@ Killdisk, which will make files unrecoverable.

    In this case the same pictures or more of them were also found on three other personal devices. His phone and two laptops.

    If your clicking on a site that pops up 30 pop up windows then the site you are going to must already be questionable in nature. Have you ever heard of a “pop-up blocker?” they come enabled by default in every web browser today, so that example isn’t the best.

    Anyways I was one of the techs that worked at the computer store the system was brought into and I can assure you that the pics were obviously user created and stored.

    We handed the PC over to the authorities before anyone in Daniel’s family was notified of anything. They did a forensic inspection of the PC and determined that the files were user created and belonged to Daniel and then an arrest was made.

    Your making it seem like we found the pics, told the cops they belonged to Daniel and they immediately rushed his home and detained him.

    They had his PC for over a week and we did not say anything to his family, we just said we were still working on the computer.

  13. Sterling says:

    Everyone is so quickly to judge and for some reason everyone believes everything they read on this site. Just because he got 7 years in prison doesn’t not mean anything he was never ACTUALLY PROVEN guilty. He only took a deal with the states to save himself from any more years. This would not be the first time someone has been accused and sentenced to jail for a crime they didn’t commit. I myself have been arrested for something I didn’t do or take part in. The state tried to make me take a deal for 6 months before my trial date arrived. On the day of my trial I stood in front of the judge no longer then 2 minutes when the state attorney announced the eye witness never saw me there and my charges were dropped and I went home. So even thought the state know of my innocence they still tried to get me. Shockingly not all judges and lawyers have your best interested in mind. I have none Mr. Danny for years. I went to Miss Dawns lil country kids at the time of the other “incidents” that was no more then a hug goodbye. and to BES where I helped TA with Mr.Danny in the Kindergarden classes everyone loved and cherished him. I have complete trust in him

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