Porter County man guilty in child porn case

2012-12-20T16:55:00Z 2012-12-21T22:49:04Z Porter County man guilty in child porn caseBob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com
December 20, 2012 4:55 pm  • 

VALPARAISO | Center Township resident Ryan Schroeder showed no reaction Thursday afternoon when a jury found him guilty on all 23 counts related to aiding in child molestation and exploitation.

The jury deliberated three hours before returning guilty verdicts on five Class A felony counts of aiding child molestation, C felony aiding child molestation, seven C felony counts of aiding in child exploitation, D felony aiding in theft, seven D felony counts of possessing child pornography and two D felony counts of aiding in voyeurism.

Schroeder, 27, will be sentenced Jan. 22 and faces between 20 and 50 years behind bars on each of the five Class A felony counts alone.

Porter County Prosecutor Cheryl Polarek said she was pleased with the verdict.

"I think it protects the community," she said.

Polarek said Schroeder's ability to manipulate women into doing his criminal bidding was unprecedented.

This week's trial featured unusually graphic testimony alleging Schroeder directed several women to take pornographic photos and videos of children, and of unsuspecting women in various state of undress and in toilet stalls. He also was accused of having the women steal underwear and carry out other various sexual activities.

Porter Circuit Court Judge Mary Harper thanked jurors for their efforts and told them the evidence was "graphic and difficult" from the spectrum of cases she hears.

"I know this was a difficult case for you," she said.

Polarek had wrapped up the case Thursday morning by challenging a claim that Schroeder waited 18 months to turn in child pornographic images received by a friend because he did not know where to turn.

"What person, who is in the U.S. Navy, who has gone through boot camp, does not know how to dial 911?" she said.

Polarek pointed out how Schroeder initially told a naval investigator he needed a moment to think if he had asked co-defendant Tara Tryon to molest a 2-year-old Chesterton boy and send him the images.

"You would know if you asked somebody to produce child pornography," Polarek said. "That's ridiculous."

Defense attorney Matt Soliday told jurors that rather than committing the offenses as charged, Schroeder actually brought an end to the crimes.

"Tara would never have been caught if Ryan didn't turn her in," Soliday said.

Soliday accused Tryon and others of testifying against Schroeder in order to help themselves. Tryon was charged with less crimes, and Adrienne Holley Harris had five of six charges dropped and is eligible now for a reduction in the 25-year federal sentence she received for taking nude photos of a 1-year-old girl and giving them to Schroeder.

Three women, including Tryon and Harris, told jurors this week they carried out Schroeder's requests out of fear and/or because they wanted to keep him in their lives.

Tryon is scheduled to appear in another courtroom Friday on the six felony counts of child molestation and seven felony counts of child exploitation she still faces in the case.

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



About Valparaiso

City of Valparaiso
166 Lincolnway Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 462-1161

Police Department
355 S. Washington St. Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 462-2135

Fire Department
2605 Cumberland Drive Valparaiso, IN 46383
(219) 462-8325

Parks & Recreation
3210 North Campbell Street Valparaiso, IN 46385
(219) 462-5144

Valparaiso Community Schools
3801 N. Campbell St. Valparaiso, IN 46385
(219) 531-3000

Latest Local Offers

Featured Businesses