Internet research charged with child porn released

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Photo -   FILE - This undated file photo provided by the Isabella County Sheriff's Department in Mount Pleasant, Mich. shows William Merrill, a Central Michigan University professor specializing in Internet censorship issues, who was arrested on child pornography charges, accused of having offensive material on his university computer. Merrill is due in court Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012 in Flint, Mich., where Merrill is being charged in federal court with possession of child pornography. (AP Photo/Isabella County Sheriff's Department, File)
FILE - This undated file photo provided by the Isabella County Sheriff's Department in Mount Pleasant, Mich. shows William Merrill, a Central Michigan University professor specializing in Internet censorship issues, who was arrested on child pornography charges, accused of having offensive material on his university computer. Merrill is due in court Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2012 in Flint, Mich., where Merrill is being charged in federal court with possession of child pornography. (AP Photo/Isabella County Sheriff's Department, File)
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FLINT, Mich. (AP) — A former Central Michigan University professor specializing in Internet censorship has been freed from jail where he was being held on child pornography charges.

U.S. Magistrate Michael Hluchaniuk on Wednesday ordered William Merrill released on a $50,000 bond, overriding a federal prosecutor's objection that Merrill might flee or try to kill himself.

The 58-year-old resigned as a professor of education at the Mount Pleasant school and faces federal charges of possession of child pornography. Authorities say they found sexually explicit videos of children on his university computer.

Merrill's areas of research included Internet censorship and the use of children in advertising.

Authorities haven't set a date for his preliminary examination.

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