INDIANAPOLIS | The Indiana Court of Appeals has rejected a request for time off the 54-year prison term issued to a Porter County man who convinced his girlfriend to molest a child and send him photographs of the act.
Ryan Schroeder, now 28, was convicted in December of 23 counts of child molesting, child exploitation, voyeurism, possession of child pornography and theft.
In his appeal, Schroeder argued his five convictions for Class A child molesting should have been Class B, because his accomplice, Tara Tryon, was under 21 when she molested a two-year-old Chesterton boy for him.
The appeals court, in a 3-0 decision, said a person who induces another to commit a crime also has committed the crime.
Because Schroeder was over 21 when he directed Tryon to perform sexual acts on the child, Schroeder committed Class A child molesting and is subject to higher penalties, the court said.
Court records indicate Schroeder had similar relationships with two other women whom he instructed to take pictures of nude women and girls in the shower, using the bathroom, in dressing rooms and while asleep.
In addition, he expressed interest in having a woman give birth to his daughter who he would then molest, according to court records.
Schroeder argued to the appeals court his overall prison term is inappropriate in light of the nature of the offenses and his character.
Specifically, he contended his crimes ought to be considered less repulsive because the two-year-old boy was too young to remember being molested.
The court summarily rejected Schroeder's claims and affirmed his full sentence. Under Indiana law, he must serve at least 85 percent of the prison term.
The three appeals judges noted Schroeder never expressed remorse for his actions and said they agreed with Porter Superior Judge Mary Harper who described Schroeder and Tryon as "horrid, vile, illegal, disgusting sexual perpetrators."
Their ruling still can be appealed to the Indiana Supreme Court.
Tryon pled guilty in May to child molesting and child exploitation and was sentenced to 10 years in prison.