SEATTLE -- A Washington state ferry worker is in federal custody after a passenger spotted him taking photos of young girls on a ferry.
It happened on July 3 on the Tillicum ferry, which runs from West Seattle to Vashon Island and Port Orchard.
Prosecutors say a passenger noticed a ferry worker acting like he was texting on a cell phone, but what he was really doing was taking photos of young girls. The passenger reported it to staff, who contacted police.
When King County Sheriff’s deputies picked him up when the ferry landed, they realized the worker was Steven Dailey, who is a registered sex offender.
Dailey had been convicted of possessing child pornography in 2009. Federal court records state he had been caught taking part in a peer-to-peer child porn site. They found more than 500 images and 78 videos in his possession, some of them so graphic in nature, that he was given 10 years probation, which federal prosecutors say is unusually long.
A federal judge will decide Friday if he will remain in custody until the next hearing on the probation violations.
It is unclear if the ferry system was aware of his criminal history. Because of personnel rules, the Washington State Department of Transportation could only tell us they have a worker on paid administrative leave pending an external investigation.