Child porn suspect kills himself after shootout with agents

4:20 PM, Aug 1, 2013   |    comments
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MANASSAS, Va. (WUSA9) --  A man at the center of a child pornography investigation is dead after an early morning raid on his home in Manassas.  

Prince William County Police say 56-year-old Douglas Lewis shot himself in the head after a shootout with federal agents.

A federal arrest and search warrant was executed at his home this morning around 6:00 a.m.  

Douglas Lewis had been charged with "knowingly receiving child pornography", a very serious charge by itself.  

But what made this raid, potentially so dangerous was that he had lot of guns inside his home; handguns, shotguns, and semi-automatic rifles.  

Federal agents seized an arsenal of firearms from the man they had been investigating for more than a year.  

"I'm shocked that he had so many guns in there.  So far I've counted them bringing out at least 21 guns," said Randall Harper, who lives down the street and was watching as a Homeland Security Special Response Team moved in. 

He said, "I was looking out the window and saw the SWAT team with their guns drawn running around the back." 

Prince William County Police say the agents found Douglas Lewis trying to flee. When they confronted him, he pulled out a gun and pointed it at the agents. One of them fired, striking Lewis in the lower body. He then ran behind a fence and shot himself in the head.

"I heard like four gunshots," said Harper.

Neighbors say they're shocked but not surprised. Federal agents first raided Lewis' home back in October and according to court documents they found more than 300 suspected child pornography files on his computer. 

At the time, he even admitted to using search terms like "10-year-old" and "11-year-old."

"I remember it was before Halloween that the last one happened because I remember on Halloween that I was surprised to see that the people were at that house giving out candy," said another neighbor, Heidi Lang.

Ten-months-later, the agents received information that Lewis was still, allegedly exchanging child pornography on the internet.  They raided his home a second time but this time Lewis was not willing to go down without a fight.

"We were shocked because we've known Doug for a number of years now and he's a very nice guy and we were amazed that, we thought they had the wrong house," said Lang.

WUSA9 is still trying to figure out exactly what Lewis did for a living.  Neighbors say he worked for a company that handles snow removal at Dulles Airport. But he also did some computer consulting out of his home. Those computers are now being analyzed as the investigation into his death continues.  

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