Investigation of ex-Jaguars jumbotron operator results in multiple criminal charges

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During the 2018 season, the Jaguars’ jumbotron malfunctioned multiple times. An investigation into the cause of the malfunctions has led to a criminal prosecution of the jumbotron operator on charges including not only hacking into the jumbotron system but also possession child sex abuse images and possessing a firearm as a felon.

The Florida Times-Union reports that Samuel Arthur Thompson, who had a contract to work on the Jaguars’ jumbotron during the 2018 season, has been charged with the offenses. The 49-year-old Thompson was a convicted sex offender who failed to register with authorities. Thompson was convicted in April 1998 of sexual abuse and sodomy on a child in Alabama.

An investigation into why the Jaguars’ jumbotron was malfunctioning during games found that a computer account associated with Thompson had been used to cause jumbotron outages, according to the report. As authorities investigated Thompson for that, they executed a search warrant at his home and found a gun, which it was illegal for him to have because he’s a convicted felon. His phones and computers were also seized and found to contain images of child sex abuse.

We are aware of the charges involving a former contractor, and we have cooperated with the investigation as requested,” the Jaguars said in a statement. “We cannot otherwise comment on this legal matter.”