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Indicted Ex-DPW Superintendent Was 11-Year Morristown Employee

Morristown resident Charles E. Jones had been on a leave of absence since his arrest on child pornography charges.

Former Morristown DPW Superintendent Charles E. Jones, who was indicted a week ago on charges of distributing child pornography over the Internet from his home computer, resigned his post with the town back in July, the town administrator said.

Jones, a 51-year-old Morristown resident, took a leave of absence after he was arrested in April and remained on leave until he resigned July 17, Town Administrator Michael Rogers said this week. Jones worked for the town for 11 years.

After his arrest, Morristown Mayor Tim Dougherty said he was "deeply disturbed about these serious charges."

Messages left with Jones' defense attorney, Clifford Weininger, were not returned as of Wednesday evening.

Morristown's new DPW superintendent, Richard Fernicola, was hired around the end of August, Rogers said. He previously worked in South Orange.

Jones was indicted last Wednesday on charges of second-degree distribution of child pornography, second-degree offering child pornography, and fourth-degree possession of child pornography, Attorney General Jeffrey S. Chiesa announced. Jones was among 27 defendants arrested last year as a result of “Operation Watchdog," which targeted the distribution of child pornography using file sharing software.

Second-degree crimes carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a $150,000 fine, while fourth-degree crimes carry a maximum sentence of 18 months in prison and a $10,000 fine.

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