LAKELAND, Fla. (TCD) --
A high school teacher in Florida was arrested Friday on 408 counts of possession of child pornography.
The Polk County Sheriff's Office said Saturday the agency received a report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that the KIK Messenger app was used to upload a video depicting child pornography on February 20.
Deputies began investigating 46-year-old Shawn Fitzgerald, a teacher and varsity soccer coach at Lakeland Senior High School. Fitzgerald is also a youth director at the First United Methodists Church in Bartow, according the the sheriff's office.
Polk County Sheriff's Computer Crimes detectives served a search warrant at Fitzgerald's residence last Thursday. A forensic examination of Fitzgerald's cellphone found a "Calculator Vault" app designed to look like a calculator, but which functions as a hidden storage area for saved images. Fitzgerald told a detective he stored images from an extramarital affair in the app.
A total of 408 files depicting child pornography were recovered from the phone, including images of both male and female children being sexually battered by adults and/or engaging in sexual acts with other children, with some of the victims appearing to be as young as 10 to 12 months old.