Montgomery Co. investigators uncover 17,000 images in child exploitation case

Posted at 1:50 PM, Oct 24, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-24 13:50:58-04

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Ind. -- Montgomery County sheriff’s investigators say they uncovered more than 17,000 images – the majority of them sexually explicit – in a child exploitation investigation in Crawfordsville, Indiana.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office announced it had charged Drew W. Sutherlin, 27, of Crawfordsville, with 15 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.

From January 2015 to May 2017, Sutherlin is accused of posing as a female online to try to entice boys between the ages of 14- and 17-years-old to send him sexually explicit images.

Sutherlin is alleged to have sent pornographic images of an actual image to several of the boys in exchange for sexually explicit images of themselves.

The charges against Sutherlin are the result of a joint investigation by the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department, the FBI, IMPD and the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

“The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Department was proud to work with the our law enforcement partners to help uncover over 14,000 pages of text messages and 17,000 images, the majority of which were sexually explicit in this investigation,” said Montgomery County Sheriff Mark Casteel.

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, if convicted, Sutherlin could face up to 35 years in prison and a minimum of five years of supervised release.

MORE FROM THE CRIME BEATThe ‘Grundy Crew’ has a long history in Indianapolis. It may have caught up with them. | PC: Man murdered over missing drugs belonging to the ‘Mexican Mafia’ | Why are .40-calibers surging in Indy as crime guns? | Message written in blood leads IMPD to murder suspect | MAP: 2017 Indianapolis Homicides