Albemarle County Judge Accepts Guilty Pleas in Child Pornography Case

Posted: Updated: Feb 14, 2018 10:56 AM

A judge is accepting a new plea deal in the case of a former University of Virginia professor charged with child pornography.

Seventy-four-year-old Walter Francis Korte Jr. entered guilty pleas in Albemarle Circuit Court on Wednesday, January 31, to two counts of possessing child pornography. He will have to register as a sex offender, and may be sentenced to up to 12 months in prison.

Judge Cheryl Higgins had denied a similar agreement back on November 14, the main difference being Korte would have admitted to one count possessing child pornography.

Judge Humes Franklin accepted Wednesday’s amended plea agreement.

Officers with the UVA Police Department arrested the film professor back on August 2, 2016. They had found images in a dumpster along Cabell Drive of clothed and unclothed guys who appeared to be in their late teens.

Among the stacks of images were magazines and junk mail addressed to Korte, who had an office at the nearby Bryan Hall. Police say they watched a man, later identified as Korte, discard items in that same dumpster on two separate occasions.

Authorities later searched the professor’s vehicle, office, and home on Fosters Branch Road in Albemarle County. According to court documents, Korte’s office contained, “substantial amounts of magazine clippings of celebrities, particularly young teens popular in the 70s through 90s.” Thousands of images were collected by investigators, the majority of which reportedly contained legal, adult pornography.

About 16 photos were deemed questionable by investigators. They later determined that one of those images depicted child pornography.

Also found were letters between Korte and a California couple discussing underage boys, and photos of young boys with notes on their age.

Prosecutors believe Korte is not at risk to offend again and he's not a threat to the public.

University of Virginia officials said Korte retired from his teaching post effective November 1, 2016. He had previously been on administrative leave following his arrest.

Korte is scheduled to be sentenced on August 21.