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Man pleads guilty in child porn case

A Moorhead elementary schools social worker pleaded guilty in Moorhead on Tuesday to a charge of disseminating child pornography. Robert Roy Haseltine, 50, Fargo, entered the plea before Judge Galen Vaa in Clay County District Court. Under a plea...

A Moorhead elementary schools social worker pleaded guilty in Moorhead on Tuesday to a charge of disseminating child pornography.

Robert Roy Haseltine, 50, Fargo, entered the plea before Judge Galen Vaa in Clay County District Court.

Under a plea agreement, Haseltine will serve six months in jail with work release and five years of supervised probation. He will be required to register as a predatory sexual offender.

The actual sentencing will happen Feb. 21, after Vaa receives results of a presentence investigation.

During Tuesday's plea hearing, under questioning from County Attorney Lisa Borgen, Haseltine testified that he sent sexually explicit pictures of children from his Fargo home to a fellow AOL member from Clay County.

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That man, Glen Rasmussen of Dilworth, has pleaded not guilty to charges of possessing and disseminating child pornography and is awaiting trial.

Haseltine's name came up in the police investigation of Rasmussen, leading to the charges against the Fargo man.

Also as part of Haseltine's sentence, he will not be allowed Internet access unless it is required for his work.

Borgen said Haseltine will ask for a stay of imposition on the sentence and electronic home monitoring, both of which she will object to.

Under the deal, if he successfully completes his Clay County sentence, Cass County and federal authorities won't prosecute him, Borgen said.

Haseltine did not talk to reporters after the hearing Tuesday and his attorney, Mark Friese, spoke only briefly.

"I think that Mr. Haseltine's plea is an acknowledgement that he should've known better," Friese said.

He said he would say more about the case after the sentencing.

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Ron Nielsen, director of human resources for the Moorhead School District, said Haseltine tendered a letter of resignation Friday from his position as a social worker at Ellen Hopkins and Robert Asp elementary schools.

His office accepted the resignation, Nielsen said, but it won't become official until the School Board acts on it at its meeting Monday. The letter did not state the reason for Haseltine's resignation, he said.

Nobody has accused Haseltine of acting inappropriately toward students at the schools, he said.

Haseltine's wife, Beth Haseltine, is executive director of the Rape and Abuse Crisis Center in Fargo.

Virginia Johnson, chairwoman of the Crisis Center, said Tuesday's court action would not affect Beth Haseltine's position.

"His plea is his personal business," Johnson said. "Beth is perfectly capable of remaining as executive director."

Beth Haseltine, who took a leave of absence in mid-September and returned to work at the center Oct. 6, did not return phone messages left at her office and home.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Tom Pantera at (701) 241-5541

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