Hearing date for ex-local fire chief reset, Paul Nelson still faces Jefferson County charges

Published 12:16 am Friday, May 31, 2024

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CONROE — A hearing in Montgomery County for ex-fire chief Paul Nelson was held Thursday morning and was reset for Aug. 28.

Nelson, 57, is facing a charge of possession with intent to promote child pornography, a second degree felony, and online solicitation of a minor, a third degree felony.

He remains in the Montgomery County Jail on bonds totaling $200,000, according to jail information online. Nelson was arrested Oct. 2 on the charges.

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Montgomery County Chief Prosecutor Chris Seufert, speaking generally and not about Nelson’s cases, said hearings are conducted for informational purposes. An example is to check on a defendant that is out on bond to make sure the person is abiding with guidelines and cooperating with his or her attorney.

Nelson also faces two charges of promotion of child pornography in Jefferson County. Those cases stem from a January 2021 arrest. He was also terminated from his position as Port Neches fire chief at that time.

According to information from the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, Nelson is going to face the Montgomery County charges first before the local charges.


Nelson was arrested in January 2021 in Port Neches on two charges of possession and promotion of child pornography. Bond was set at $50,000 and he bonded out the next day.

The Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office said in 2021that members of the Office of the Texas Attorney General’s Child Exploitation Unit executed the arrest and search warrant for Nelson. Nelson was not indicted at that time in Jefferson County for the charges and he later moved out of the area to Montgomery County.

His Montgomery County arrest spurred Port Arthur Newsmedia calls to the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office for information on the status of the local case.

A representative of Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office said in October 2023 that no case was ever filed on Nelson. It is unknown how the case slipped through the system, during which time another alleged victim was found in Montgomery County.

Nelson was indicted in October on the child pornography related charges in relation to the Jefferson County arrest. Gary Marquis of the Attorney General’s Office submitted the case to the D.A.’s office. The local indictment did not have a probable cause affidavit or accompanying documents, but the Montgomery cases provided some insight into the allegations that Nelson went online, posing as a female, and struck up an online conversation with a juvenile female.

The Montgomery County arrest document stated Nelson used the same “modus operandi” for the offence as he used in Jefferson County by portraying himself as a female member of a nudist community to solicit explicit content from a child.