CLEVELAND (WJW) – A Cleveland attorney has been indicted on charges of child exploitation and illegal drugs.

Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael C. O’Malley announced Thursday that a grand jury charged 49-year-old Eric Norton.

According to the prosecutor’s office, on December 15, 2022, Eric Norton entered the Cuyahoga County Jail for a scheduled meeting with an inmate. As he prepared to go through the screening process, a Cuyahoga County sheriff requested that he remove any items he had on him, according to a press release from the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office.

According to the release, Norton started putting items on a tray and then abruptly left his belongings and walked off with a plastic bag with 5.12 grams of methamphetamine.

That is when Norton went into the men’s restroom in the lobby of the justice center, threw the bag away and left, the prosecutor’s office says.

According to the release, a sheriff noticed Norton’s unusual behavior, went into the restroom and found the small plastic bag. Eric Norton was then detained.

A search warrant for Eric Norton’s cell phone was then obtained by police. During a search of his cell phone, child exploitation materials were found, according to the release.

Eric Norton was indicted on the following charges:

  • One count of Illegal Use Of Minor In Nudity-Oriented Material Or Performance
  • One count of Drug Possession
  • One count of Illegal Conveyance Into Detention Facility
  • One count of Tampering With Evidence
  • One count of Possessing Criminal Tools

Norton will be arraigned at the Cuyahoga County Justice Center on April 14.

According to his website, Norton is a criminal defense attorney and has had a private practice since 2004.