Vardaman man arrested for child pornography, sexual battery

December 18, 2019

A Vardaman resident was arrested Monday and charged with two counts of possession of child pornography and one count of sexual battery, Attorney General Jim Hood announced. 

Melvin Lee Cardwell, 25, was arrested at his home by investigators of the Attorney General’s Cyber Crime Unit following an investigation into his suspicious online activity. Investigators seized numerous electronic devices belonging to Cardwell.

Cardwell was booked into the Calhoun County jail with a $20,000 bond set for each count. If convicted, he faces up to 40 years for each child exploitation count. Additionally, he faces life in prison for the sexual battery count. A charge is merely an accusation, and a defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

This case was investigated by the AG’s Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force with assistance from the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office. Prosecution will be handled by Special Assistant Attorney General Brandon Ogburn.

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