ATLANTA - William Carter Gorman's bright orange jump suit was the only contrast to the quietness of an Atlanta courtroom Wednesday where the 54-year-old entered a plea of not guilty to child pornography charges.
Gorman was indicted Aug. 7 on federal charges of receiving and possessing child pornography and appeared in court Wednesday to enter a not guilty plea before U.S. Magistrate Judge Alan Baverman.
Gorman, a pharmacist and owner of Monfort Drugs in Lawrenceville and treasurer for the Lawrenceville Downtown Development Authority, faces one count of receiving child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography for allegedly mail-ordering eight videos worth $200 depicting minors ages 7 to 17 years old, according to an affidavit prepared by the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.
Gorman's mother, father and sister sat in a back row of the small courtroom Wednesday, intently listening and watching as Baverman instructed Gorman to sign a form to formally enter his plea.
Gorman's family declined to comment on the allegations against the 54-year-old who has owned Monfort Drugs since 1980 and resides in the city with three daughters.
Gorman remains in federal custody without bond and will continue to be detained until his federal trial date, which has not been set, said Patrick Crosby, a U.S. Department of Justice spokesman.
Federal prosecutors asked that Gorman be held as a flight risk and a danger to the community, a U.S. Postal Inspection Service official said previously.
Gorman's attorney, Decatur-based Mark Sallee, said he's looking forward to pretrial discussion and filing motions in the case in the upcoming weeks.
"The next step is filing motions to get this more in line from our point of view," Sallee said.
As for Sallee's hopes for an upcoming trial, he said he's out to prove the charges brought against his client untrue.
"We hope to show that these allegations of child pornography are false and then re-apply for bond ... and I'm confident we will get bond," Sallee said.
The videos Gorman allegedly ordered - and placed in the trunk of his car - carry titles such as "Little Ones in Love" and "Pre-Teen Trio," the affidavit says. The arrest was part of a nationwide sting conducted by postal inspectors.
If convicted of receiving child pornography, United States Attorney Robert McBurney said Gorman could face a minimum of five years in prison.
Local authorities have also charged Gorman with two counts of felony child molestation for alleged misconduct with a 13-year-old female acquaintance at his 725 James Ridge Drive home in Lawrenceville.
According to an arrest warrant issued in Gwinnett, Gorman is accused of exposing himself to an underage girl at his residence on July 22, though police investigations indicate the misconduct was ongoing.
Sallee said his client's family remains supportive of Gorman despite all federal and local allegations. Sallee previously called the child molestation charges "flimsy" and maintained that Gorman's name can be cleared, though the process won't be easy.
Gorman could face at least 10 years in prison if convicted of both counts of child molestation, according to Georgia law.