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USFSP librarian arrested on child pornography charges

in The Bay and the 'Burg by
James Anthony Schnur

A University of South Florida St. Petersburg librarian was arrested Wednesday on child pornography charges, according to the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office.

James Anthony Schnur, 51, is facing 10 charges of possession of child pornography and two charges for the prohibition of certain acts in connection with obscene materials.

According to PCSO records, his bond is set at more than $1 million.

Deputies said they started investigating Schnur in January after getting a tip about him having the obscene material, and when they arrested him Wednesday morning they were able to recover images from his computer depicting bestiality and child pornography.

Possession of child pornography is a third-degree felony in Florida, punishable by up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000 per charge.

Schnur is a three-time graduate of USFSP who works at the Poynter Library on campus as a Special Collections librarian.

His faculty bio sketch on the USFSP website describes as a “prolific author” and “coveted lecturer.”

“Archivist, author, faculty, public speaker — Jim Schnur rarely takes a break from his sundry creative labors,” the bio reads.

Schnur was the inaugural recipient of Lester Tuttle Award from the USF Pinellas County Alumni Chapter and was inducted into the Rays Wall of Fame in 2010. He’s also been recognized for his work as a librarian by the Society of Florida Archivists.

USFSP declined to comment on the arrest, though spokeswoman Jessica Blais said Schnur has been placed on leave while the university reviews the case.

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for SaintPetersBlog and FloridaPolitics.com. While at the University of Florida, Wilson was an editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and after graduation, he moved to Los Angeles to cover business deals for The Hollywood Reporter. Before joining Extensive Enterprises, Wilson covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools.

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