The Warrick County Sheriff's Department recently made four arrests involving sexual abuse of children.
In three separate cases, the department arrested three men of Newburgh and one of Evansville on charges involving sexual molestation of a child younger than 10 years old, sexual molestation of a child younger than 14 years old and sexual misconduct with a minor.
On Feb. 14, Lenis McClain, 64, of Evansville, was arrested on charges of child molesting as a Class A felony. A warrant was issued for McClain's arrest after an interview with a child revealed allegations that he had molested a child younger than 10 years old.
McClain was later released after posting a $10,000 cash bond. A Class A felony is punishable by 20 to 50 years in the Indiana Department of Corrections and up to a $10,000 fine.
On Feb. 15, Jonathon Kent Roy, 26, of Newburgh, was arrested on charges of child molesting as a Level 1 felony. The arrest warrant was issued after an investigation into allegations that Roy molested a child under the age of 14. The Sheriff's Department reported that the child notified school personnel and was later interviewed.
Roy is currently being held at the Warrick County Jail on a $10,000 cash bond. A Level 1 felony is punishable by 20 to 50 years in the Indiana Department of Corrections and up to a $10,000 fine.
Later on Feb. 15, a months-long investigation led to the arrest of Justin Alexander Jarvis, 43, and Robert Owen, 38, both of Newburgh. The Sheriff's Department reported that the investigation began in October after information was received indicating that a juvenile had been in a sexual relationship with both men. The report also stated that the information also indicated that pornographic images were exchanged between the juvenile and at least one of the adults.
After executing a search warrant, Warrick County officers found digital evidence and illegal narcotics. An interview with the victim led to the information that some of the sexual activity had been recorded. After examination of the digital media and interviews were conducted, the prosecutor filed charges.
Owen was arrested on two counts of sexual misconduct with a minor, as Level 4 felonies, and was released after posting a $4,000 cash bond.
Jarvis was arrested on two counts of sexual misconduct with a minor, Level 4 felonies; three counts of child exploitation, as Level 5 felonies; possession of child pornography, a Level 6 felony; dissemination of matter harmful to minors, a Level 6 felony; possession of methamphetamine, a Level 6 felony; possession of marijuana, a Class B misdemeanor; and possession of paraphernalia, a Class C misdemeanor. Jarvis was released from the Warrick County Jail after posting a $4,000 cash bond.
Warrick County Sheriff Brett Kruse said it was a fluke that all three cases resulted in arrest at the same time. However, he said the amount of cases involving sex crimes have risen over time as a result of growing population and growing awareness of the issue.
"People are more aware of these cases, so more are reported," he said.
The Warrick County Sheriff's Office was assisted in these investigations by the Indiana State Police, Evansville Police Department, and Federal Bureau of Investigation as part of the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.