A Maryland man pleaded guilty today in federal court in Indianapolis to seven counts of child pornography production and was sentenced to 33 years in prison and a lifetime of supervised release, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney Joseph H. Hogsett of the Southern District of Indiana.
Trevor J. Shea, 21, of Mechanicsburg, Maryland, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge William T. Lawrence in the US Federal Court, Southern District of Indiana. During the plea and sentencing hearing, Shea admitted to using blackmail to coerce 10 minor girls between the ages of 13 and 16 years to produce images and videos of themselves engaging in sadistic and masochistic abuse and other sexually explicit conduct.
According to court documents, the case arose from an investigation by the Brownsburg, Ind., Police Department, which received a complaint in late September 2009 that Victim One, a 16-year-old girl, was being stalked via the internet. Victim One and a family member reported that several months earlier, Jane Doe 1 and two other female minors visited an online webcam site where they exposed their breasts to unknown webcam viewers.
Approximately one week later, Victim One began receiving emails and instant messages from Shea, who threatened to post the nude images of Victim One and her friends to the internet. Shea told Victim One that if she produced more images and/or webcam videos for him, he would not post the photos for others to see. Victim One complied with some of these demands, and produced images and videos of herself engaging in sexually explicit conduct. She then transmitted the images and videos to him.
Working with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), the Brownsburg Police Department traced the internet communications and a federal search warrant was obtained and executed at Shea’s Maryland home on March 4, 2010. Evidence was recovered during that search showing that numerous females around the country were victimized by Shea in a manner virtually identical to Victim One. Five of these other victims were identified as minor girls.
On June 9, 2010, Shea was indicted on four counts of production of child pornography for his conduct against Victim One. Shea made an initial appearance on these charges and was released to his Maryland home on conditions, including home detention with electronic monitoring and a prohibition on his use of a computer or the Internet.
In early November 2010, while Shea was on pretrial release, the Santa Rosa County, Florida, Sheriff’s Department interviewed “Victim Two,” a 16-year-old girl. Victim Two reported that in 2009, an individual, later determined to be Shea, threatened her via the internet and coerced her to produce nude images. The search of Shea’s residence in March 2010 recovered images of Victim Two from Shea’s computer, but she had not yet been identified by law enforcement. Victim Two reported that in November 2010, she was contacted again by the individual, who threatened to disseminate the nude images that he previously had obtained from her, and demanded new nude images. In response to this threat, Jane Doe 2 made videos that depicted herself engaging in sexually explicit conduct and emailed them to Shea.
Following Victim Two’s report in November 2010, investigators determined that the email account to which Victim Two had been coerced to send the images and videos of herself was being accessed by an individual at Shea’s residence. Florida law enforcement coordinated with the Brownsburg Police Department and USPIS, and a federal search warrant was executed at Shea’s residence on Dec. 22, 2010. Shea was arrested again that day, detained, and he has since remained in custody.
Investigators determined that in addition to Victim Two, Shea similarly victimized three other minor girls in November and December 2010 while he was on pretrial release. On Sept. 13, 2011, Shea was charged with three additional counts of production of child pornography for his conduct against these four minor girls.
The case against Shea was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney A. Brant Cook of the Southern District of Indiana and Trial Attorney Bonnie L. Kane of the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS) in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division.
The case was investigated by the Brownsburg Police Department, USPIS, Indiana State Police, Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Department, and the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force . Substantial assistance was provided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section’s High Technology Investigative Unit, and Maryland State Police.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Criminal Division’s CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood.
Police said a 16-year-old Brownsburg girl and her friends visited an online webcam site where they flashed their breasts to unknown viewers back in 2009. The girl said a week after that incident, Shea began contacting her. She said he threatened to post the pictures of her and her friends online unless she produced more images and webcam videos for him. Police then executed a search warrant at Shea’s Maryland home in 2010. Authorities found photo and video evidence of several other girls and women from around the country. Investigators determined the women and girls had been victimized in a nearly identical fashion. In June 2010, Shea was indicted on four counts of production of child pornography. He was released to his home following an initial appearance for those charges. He had to wear an electronic monitoring device and was not allowed to use his computer or the internet. While Shea was awaiting trial, Florida authorities interviewed a 16-year-old girl who also Claimed he was blackmaling her. Authorities were able to determine that evidence obtained from Shea’s residence were of this second victim. The second victim told officials Shea had blackmailed her the year before. This second victim came to police after someone contacted her through Facebook, asking if the person who blackmailed her had been caught. When she said she didn’t know, police said Shea told her to guess who was back. Shea again threatened to publish nude photos he had previously obtained from her.
Investigators executed another search warrant at Shea’s residence following the second victim’s report. During that search, authorities found evidence that Shea victimized three other minor girls while he was on pretrial release. Authorities filed three additional counts of production of child pornography following their investigation. The Brownsburg Police Department, Indiana State Police, Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Department and the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force investigated this case. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section’s High Technology Investigative Unit and Maryland State Police also assisted.
original publication: www.nsfw.net.au