SANTA CLAUS ARRESTED ON CHILD PORNOGRAPHY CHARGES , WAS EX-CON FROM MURDER
Meet 75-year-old Thomas Rittenhouse. Unconfirmed accounts suggest that Thomas was a real life Santa Claus at various malls and shopping centers in North Carolina. Thomas killed a cop in 1963 and served prison time for it.
Thomas was arrested on November 13 by federal officials in Charlotte, NC for possessing child pornography. Federal Indictments show that in 2017 Thomas knowingly transported, shipped, and aided child pornography. Documents also show that Thomas viewed the inappropriate content on his computer. His computer was seized by police.
Thomas was officially charged with transportation and possession of child pornography, federal authorities say.
But jail time is no big deal for Thomas, because police say he served time for killing a sheriff's deputy in Pottawatomie County, Okla., in 1963. An Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial website says Thomas shot Deputy Odos Neal Smith, who was helping escort Thomas to a county jail.
Thomas was AWOL from an Air Force Base in Kansas, according to Oklahoma Law Enforcement Memorial Inc:
> Shortly after 10 p.m. on Febuary 3, 1963, the constable was driving to Shawnee with the deputy and prisoner in the back seat. Both officers had not noticed a .25 automatic pistol Rittenhouse was carrying in a shoulder holster and his hands were handcuffed in front of him.
> Rittenhouse drew the weapon and shot Deputy Smith four times in the chest, leg and shoulders. The constable then wrecked the vehicle and the suspect jumped out. The wounded deputy got out of the wrecked police car and tried to pursue the suspect but collapsed in the roadway.
> A passing vehicle struck the deputy in the highway and dragged his body 30 feet before stopping. Rittenhouse surrendered to the constable at the scene. Smith was survived by his wife.