FEDS CHARGE REPEAT SEX OFFENDER WITH POSSESSION OF CHILD PORN

Carrying a bible, Shane Allen Edgerly, 42, of Fairfield is lead into the courtroom by Public Defender Paul Gross in October of 2017.                                             Gregory J. Lamoureux, County Courier file

By Gregory J. Lamoureux
County Courier

MILTON: It’s been almost a year to the day after Shane Edgerly, 42 years old, was lead into a St. Albans courtroom to face charges that he sexually assaulted a family member. Now, Federal agents have charged him with possession of child pornography on his cell phone.

Agent Michael McCullagh from the Department of Homeland Security was tasked with following up on a tip from a website Edgerly was using to host the child porn.

In the nine page long affidavit, Agent McCullagh describes following digital breadcrumbs from the website to Edgerly’s parents’ doorstep, in Milton, where he was living pending the outcome of the October 2017 sexual assault charge from Franklin County.

The tip came from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, who forwarded information provided to them by Rabbit, Inc., a file sharing network, who had identified images on their servers with several usernames that linked to Edgerly, including Shaneallen, roadhammer, and Lovejehovah1.

The Agent obtained a search warrant for Edgerly’s iCloud account, a service provided through Apple. In that warrant, there were more than 100 images that were turned over to the Feds, some of which contained images that Edgerly could be identified in, according to court records.

RELATED: Police arrest Fairfield sex offender, again

The Homeland Security Agent and a detective from the Vermont Attorney General’s office went to the Edgerly home, located at 68 Hidden Meadows in Milton on Thursday, October 4th. When they eventually were able to speak with Edgerly, they told Edgerly they were conducting a sex offender registry check.

Edgerly confirmed his identity to the Detective and Agent, then proceeded to tell them he does not use the internet or have an email address.

“We explained that we conducted a search warrant of the edgerly75@iCloud.com account and it had his personal information in it as well as child pornography. He responded, ‘Hmm, that’s not good,’ but did not appear surprised,” wrote Agent McCullagh in court documents filed on Friday.

The agent pressed Edgerly, according to court records, on the Rabbit, Inc. account as well as the child pornography. Edgerly responded by saying it must have been someone else.

Edgerly’s father was in the general vicinity of the conversation, so Agent McCullagh asked Edgerly if he wanted to speak in a more private area. He did, and once they were away from Edgerly’s father, he admitted to the agent sending at least six images of child porn to someone on the Rabbit, Inc. network.

He also explained his usernames to the detectives. Roadhammer being the name of his truck, and lovejehova1 meaning “love Jahova first.”

Court records indicate that during the conversation with Law Enforcement, Edgerly told them he had been trading child pornography with others he met online since early 2016 through his Gmail, iCloud, Yahoo, Rabbit, Inc., and Pinterest accounts.

Police later confirmed this, according to the most recent federal indictment. A computer forensic analyst recovered “a folder which contained several hundred images of child pornography,” from a computer that was seized during the interview, according to the Agent.

“I recognized numerous family photographs from the EdgerlyT1@icloud.com account that was also in this folder combined with the child pornography images. Some of the family images are photographs of Shane Edgerly,” wrote Agent McCullagh.

One image obtained by law enforcement appeared to be a screenshot, according to court records, and had the description at the top, “smallnakedgirls.ru.” The agent described the image in great detail of a three to four year old girl in a sexually provocative position with a man.

The affidavit describes numerous other images of ages, through to preteen, in sexually explicit positions as well.

Edgerly is facing a mandatory minimum of 15 years, with a maximum of 40 years for each count. Currently, he is only being charged with one count of possession of child pornography, however, that could change at a later date.

Edgerly’s case from last year in Franklin County is still pending. He was accused of sexually assaulting a young female, leading to the state charges.

Those accusations were well known to those around Edgerly long before police became involved, according to court records. The victim told police the family dealt with the incident by confiding in church elders from the Jehovah Witness Kingdom Hall. That didn’t stop the abuse, however, according to the victim.

Edgerly has a list of charges and convictions related to sex crimes, including  two convictions of Lewd and Lascivious Conduct with a child in 2000, failure to comply with the sex offender registry in 2005, and more recently the Lewd and Lascivious charge in October of 2017 which is still pending in Criminal Court in St. Albans.

Edgerly is being held at the Northwest State Correctional Center in St. Albans.

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