Members of the Washington State Patrol’s Missing and Exploited Children’s Task Force arrested Patrick A. Sheely on Friday after a citizen found his cell phone on the side of the freeway.
Troopers said the person who found the phone was in the process of returning it to Sheely when they discovered numerous videos on the device allegedly showing children being sexually abused. The victims were girls between the ages of 5 and 12, the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office said.
The Good Samaritan turned the phone over to detectives, who secured a warrant to look through the phone. Detectives said they found more than 100 pictures and videos of young girls engaged in sexual acts.
Detectives called Sheely and gave him the impression they wanted to give him the phone back. When Sheely arrived, detectives confirmed his identity and arrested him.
During a search of Sheely’s home, detectives seized computers and other devices said to contain tens of thousands of videos and images of child porn.
Sheely was booked into the Snohomish County Jail. His bail has since been set at $250,000. Troopers said additional charges are expected as the investigation into Sheely progresses.