A 21-year-old Freemansburg man is facing charges after authorities say he used Instagram to distribute explicit photos of himself and receive nude photos of girls younger than 13, allegedly blackmailing the teens if they refused to comply with his demands.
Tyler John Cawley, of Garfield Street, was charged following a November raid in which authorities executing a search warrant seized devices belonging to him, Lehigh Valley Live reported Wednesday.
The raid occurred after authorities were contacted by a concerned Virginia father who discovered that someone had sent a photo of a man’s penis to his 14-year-old daughter on Instagram, the news site reported.
According to Northampton County court records, Cawley has been charged by state police at Bethlehem with:
- Disseminating images of child sex acts (Felony 2)
- Child pornography (Felony 3)
- Criminal use of a communication facility (Felony 3)
- Selling obscene/sexual materials (Misdemeanor 1)
Following a preliminary arraignment before District Judge Nancy Matos Gonzalez Wednesday, Cawley was jailed at the Northampton County Prison in lieu of $250,000 straight bail, court records show.
A preliminary hearing in his case is scheduled to be held before Gonzalez on Tuesday, March 3 at 9 a.m., according to the court records.
Note: Individuals charged with a crime are presumed innocent until proven guilty. This story was compiled using information from police and public court documents.