Ramey’s Attorney talks

Ramey’s attorney claims images aren’t porn, he was targeted due to high profile

An attorney for Greg Ramey, a former child psychologist at Dayton Children’s Hospital facing child pornography charges, say the images on his computer were “provocative” but not obscene or illegal.

The defense attorney also said Ramey was targeted because of his high public profile.

Ramey pleaded not guilty Friday in Greene County Common Pleas Court to a 145-county indictment filed Thursday. His bond was set at $500,000, and his attorney Jon Paul Rion said he expects his client to post bond and be free while awaiting trial. Ramey’s trial is scheduled for May 18.

RELATED: Dayton Children’s on porn charges: ‘We are shocked’

Ramey in court

Ramey appeared via video from the Greene County Jail for Friday’s arraignment. He wore inmate scrubs and said nothing other than answering yes or no questions from Magistrate Margaret Young.

Rion said before the arraignment, “We can tell you that the images are not even close to what the general public would think would be associated in a case like this.”

He said the images were of minors of both sexes and various ages. He said they depicted no sex acts and many were similar to what you would find in a family photo album or even some PG-rated movies.

“Every single individual in these images is clothed,” he said. “It’s far more benign than someone would expect to see in a case like this.”

Rion said he believes Ramey is being targeted because of his high profile in the community.

“I would assert that if Dr. Ramey served in a very non-public position, that I would have a serious question as to whether or not any of these charges would ever have been brought,” Rion said. “It’s my sense that there is a concern because of the position he held in the community that he is being held to a higher standard.”

RELATED: Dr. Greg Ramey, ex-Dayton Children’s psychologist, facing 145 child porn charges

Asked about Rion’s statements, a spokesman for the Ohio Attorney General’s Office said: “The grand jury was presented with the facts of the case and the indictment speaks for itself.”

The indictment alleges that between Jan. 1, 2012, and July 29, 2019, Ramey photographed or transferred photos of a minor “in a state of nudity,” and bought or possessed “obscene material” involving a minor. From July 1, 2019, to Aug. 8, 2019, Ramey knew of the investigation and tried to alter, destroy or hide evidence, the indictment alleges.

An indictment is an accusation that prosecutors must prove in court.

Ramey was identified as the source of electronic downloads of child pornography and Ramey’s activity was reported to the Ohio Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, according to the attorney general’s office.

Rion said Ramey did not produce any of the images. He wouldn’t say why Ramey had them but said it had nothing to do with his work.

Ramey started at Dayton Children’s in 1979 and was dismissed in August. The pediatric psychologist was one of the public faces of Dayton Children’s, writing a weekly parenting column in the Dayton Daily News that was distributed on the New York Times wire service, and making frequent appearances in local and outside media.

He was also with the Wright State Department of Pediatrics as division chief for pediatric psychology.

“Dr. Ramey has given a lot of years of service to this community and I know the attorney general’s office is turning that against him in this case, but the fact of the matter is he served nobly and loyally to the Dayton community,” Rion said. “None of these allegations involve anything related to work whatsoever and so all the great work he did for the community, in my mind, is left untarnished.”

Ramey’s work included serving on the steering committee at Michael’s House, a Fairborn nonprofit that serves child victims, including victims of sex crimes. Ramey served in an advisory role and had no contact with children, according to Greene County Prosecutor Stephen Haller, who also serves on the steering committee.

Haller said he referred the case to the state when his office learned about it about six months ago because they both served on that board.

“After working with Dr. Ramey and knowing him in his professional capacity, when we first got the tip, I was shocked,” he said.

Bob Stinson, a forensic psychologist and attorney in Columbus, said it’s common for people to be shocked when they learn that someone they know is associated with deviant sexual behavior. “These individuals look just like everybody else. These individuals, unfortunately, they’re in our families, our schools, churches, sports recreation leagues,” Stinson said.

“Perpetrators don’t carry around a sign … It’s a very secretive behavior,” he said.

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