Altoona superintendent’s charges tied to sex trafficking case in North Carolina

Daniel Peggs

ALTOONA, Wis. — The arrest of a school leader in Eau Claire County on child sex trafficking charges is connected to another case out of North Carolina, according to federal court records.

Altoona schools Superintendent Daniel Peggs, 32, was arrested on Thursday. He is charged with sex trafficking of a minor and making child pornography.

On the same day, Bryan Lee Ragon, 43, of Charlotte, North Carolina, was arrested and charged with sex trafficking of a minor, production of child pornography, transportation of a minor and receipt of child pornography.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, the victim involved is the same in both cases.

Ragon’s indictment indicates he knowingly took a minor across state lines to engage in illegal sexual activity and produced child pornography featuring the minor. Ragon is accused of trafficking the minor in North Carolina, Wisconsin and other areas from Dec. 16, 2015 to Dec. 31, 2015.

The indictment for Peggs alleges that from October 2015 through May 2016, he “recruited and maintained an individual knowing that the individual was a minor and would be caused to engage in a commercial sex act.”

According to United States Attorney Scott Blader, the conduct Peggs is charged with doesn’t involve an Altoona student.

The school district said counselors will be available to help any staff or students “struggling with this news.”

Peggs was brought to Madison Thursday for an initial appearance in U.S. District Court. He is being held in the Dane County Jail awaiting a detention hearing on Monday.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Ragon’s hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 25.

The case was brought to court officials as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. It was launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.