Babysitter Charged with Sexual Abuse, Child Porn in St. Mary's Co.

HOLLYWOOD, Md. (Oct. 18, 2013)—A man who had moved into the St. Mary's County home where he had been hired to babysit two children has been charged with sexually abusing and taking pornographic pictures of one of the children in his care.

The Maryland State Police does not identify victims of sex offenses and/or child abuse, both of which allegedly occurred in this situation, so the child is not being identified. Due to the accused living with the children, identifying the accused could lead to the identity of the victim, so his name is being withheld also.

The accused is a 28-year-old male, who was living in the 23000-block of Lawrence Hayden Road in Hollywood. After consultation with the St. Mary's County State's Attorney's Office, State Police criminal investigators charged the accused with sexual abuse of a minor, second degree sexual offense, and possession of child pornography. Additional charges are possible as a result of a continuing investigation. The accused is incarcerated in the St. Mary's County Detention Center.

The victim is a male. He is under ten years old, but is not being described further in order to protect his identity.

The investigation began Thursday when a trooper at the Leonardtown Barrack was contacted by a woman who said about three months ago, her daughter hired a friend to babysit her two children while she was at work. The friend eventually moved into the home.

The complainant became concerned about the babysitter's behavior. When she found pornographic pictures of her grandson on the babysitter's cell phone, she contacted State Police.

State Police investigators from the Criminal Enforcement Division were immediately contacted and continued the investigation. With the assistance of an agent from Child Protective Services and the Child Advocacy Center, the investigation continued through the night. Interviews were conducted with the victim and the accused. A search warrant was obtained and served at the home. Cell phones and computer equipment belonging to the accused were recovered. A forensic examination of this equipment will be conducted by the Maryland State Police Computer Crimes Unit.

No evidence was obtained at this time indicating the accused had inappropriate contact with the other child in the home. The investigation is continuing.

Source: Maryland State Police HQ

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