New Internet Crime Effort Nets Arrest

Perry W. Sharpley Perry W. Sharpley

BERLIN — Just days after the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office announced a new initiative to combat crimes against children in the community, the new partnership has already paid dividends with the arrest of a Stockton man last Thursday on charges of possession and distribution of child pornography.
Worcester County Sheriff Reggie Mason last week announced a new initiative to combat crimes against children by partnering with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC).
The ICAC Task Force was created to help federal, state and local law enforcement agencies enhance their investigative responses to offenders to use the Internet, online communications systems or computer technology to sexually exploit children. The program, which has been in place nationwide for over a decade, is funded by the U.S. Department of Justice and its Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
This week the first significant arrest utilizing the program was announced. Last Thursday, Perry William Sharpley, 42, of Stockton, was arrested and charged with three counts of possession of child pornography and three counts of distribution of child pornography. The arrest was the result of the combined efforts of the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, the Maryland State Police Computer Crimes Unit and the Department of Homeland Security.
Through their affiliation with the ICAC Task Force, detectives learned that Sharpley had uploaded an image of known child pornography to a Facebook account he had created. Detectives then obtained Sharpley’s personal laptop computer on which they found three more images of known child pornography. He was taken before a District Court Commissioner and was later released on his own recognizance.
The new system employs a meta data crawler to search for potential child pornography being disseminated in Worcester County and the surrounding area. Once computer evidence is located, further investigation is required to identify violators and make criminal arrests. Mason and Worcester County State’s Attorney Beau Oglesby are looking for their partnership with the ICAC Task Force to further strengthen the fight against child exploiters and abusers in Worcester.
The partnership with the ICAC Task Force is expected to help strengthen the mission of the Child Advocacy Center, or Cricket Center, in Worcester and across the Lower Shore.

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