SAN TAN VALLEY — Pinal County deputies arrested a San Tan Valley man on suspicion of sexual exploitation of a minor after finding him hiding in his attic.

According to the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office, deputies arrested John Allen, 52, on Nov. 3 after serving a search warrant on his San Tan Valley home.

Allen was found hiding behind a pile of boxes in his attic. Deputies say they found multiple graphic images of children on his cellphone.

“We take these cases very seriously,” said Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb. “Possessing even one exploitative image of a minor could earn you anywhere from 10 to 24 years in prison.”

Lamb commended the work of the office’s deputies in the case.

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Suzanne Adams-Ockrassa is a reporter covering the city of Casa Grande and the surrounding area, as well as Central Arizona College. She can be reached at sadams@pinalcentral.com.

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