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Man Arrested After Police Find Child Pornography

Last updated on Monday, August 12, 2013

(BLOOMFIELD) - A Bloomfield man was arrested Thursday afternoon on several charges of involving child pornography that he claimed he got off of other people’s computers when he serviced them.

Indiana State Police Detective Christopher Cecil led members of the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, and members of the ISP Cybercrimes Unit to execute a search warrant at the home of 48-year-old Randal Sherrard II, at a trailer on Eastview Drive. There police took several computers.

When Sherrard appears in Greene Superior Court for an initial hearing, he will be charged with five counts of possession of child pornography, all class D felonies.

The Greene County Daily World reports that ISP Det. Cecil is assigned to the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. He investigates the online exploitation of children, especially in relation to the illegal possession and dissemination of child pornography.

Cecil has been watching the activity allegedly coming from Sherrard's computer for awhile.

In a lengthy and very detailed probable cause affidavit prepared by Det. Cecil, he explained he first noticed activity on Jan. 7 of 250 files available on file-sharing network BitTorrent that he eventually tracked back to Sherrard.

The user, allegedly Sherrard, had left their computer configured to share files from a folder. Det. Cecil downloaded them.

In this first instance, the detective reported he downloaded 247 image files, the majority depicting children under the age of 18 posing in various states of nudity. He said they appeared to have been photographed by a voyeur. There were multiple series of images of the same female.

The detective connected with the same user through the BitTorrent network to download still more files with numerous images the next day, and the next.

Cecil reported finding images of girls between 14-16 years of age, others of girls between 7-15 years, and some of a child 6-8 years old. The girls were in various stages of nudity and were photographed in sexually suggestive poses.

The officer wrote that the images came from a "single-source" download, meaning the files came exclusively and wholly from the single suspect computer and not from a group of computers possessing the same file.

Through the computer's IP address and Comcast Cable Company records obtained with a subpoena, the computer was tracked back to Sherrard.

A search warrant for the Sherrard residence was granted and officers reported finding multiple computers and hard drives that were examined on the scene by officers from the ISP Cybercrimes Unit.

On the scene, the examiners said they found 19 videos depicting children engaging in sexual intercourse, sex acts and sexually suggestive poses.

According to the affidavit, infant children were in some of these videos and some of the children were known child victims as identified by law enforcement and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

The affidavit describes one video with multiple scenes of an adult male trying to penetrate a girl who appeared to be 3-4 years old.

Sherrard was informed of his Miranda Rights -- then he signed a waiver and spoke to the officers.

During the interview, Sherrard allegedly admitted to using BitTorrent, to download videos, movies and music and said he viewed child pornography out of mere curiosity.

However, according to the affidavit, "Sherrard stated he did not download child pornography from the internet or via uTorrent. He explained he maintained a side job of servicing people's computers and routinely copied their media files to his computer. He said this was where he got some of his child pornography."

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