Written from an Indiana State Police press release:
Mitchell, Indiana – October 4, 2023
A Mitchell resident was apprehended on Friday evening, following the efforts of the Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. The arrest was made in response to a Priority 1 cybertip report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), highlighting child molestation and child pornography concerns, according to the Indiana State Police.
Detective Robert Whyte, a member of the Indiana State Police’s Internet Crimes Against Children Unit, initiated the investigation upon receipt of two cybertip reports forwarded by NCMEC. These reports implicated an individual using the online platform formerly known as Twitter and raised alarm about the possible creation and possession of child pornography. The Priority 1 designation by NCMEC underscored the urgency of the situation, indicating an imminent or existing risk to an individual, according to ISP.
NCMEC, a non-profit organization dedicated to preventing child abduction and sexual exploitation nationwide, played a crucial role in this case. Detective Whyte meticulously reviewed the NCMEC cybertip reports and swiftly obtained a residential search warrant. A team consisting of ISP ICAC Detectives, Digital Forensic Examiners, uniformed Troopers, and Officers from the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department executed the warrant, identifying the account holder as Bryan Fish, aged 30, and subsequently taking him into custody.
Fish faces a litany of charges, including:
- Four counts of Child Molest (35-42-4-3), classified as a Level 1 Felony.
- Four counts of Production of Child Pornography (35-42-4-4) involving victims under the age of 12, categorized as a Level 4 Felony.
- Six counts of Distribution of Child Pornography (35-42-4-4) involving victims under the age of 12, designated as a Level 4 Felony.
- Six counts of Possession of Child Pornography (35-42-4-4) involving victims under the age of 12, categorized as a Level 5 Felony.
During the course of their investigation, Detectives, led by Whyte, successfully identified and rescued three children believed to be in imminent danger. Fish was subsequently transported to the Lawrence County Jail, where custody was transferred.
The Indiana Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force, operating under the purview of the Indiana State Police, is a multi-agency task force dedicated to investigating and prosecuting individuals who exploit or entice children through online means.
The ICAC Task Force encourages residents of Indiana to report incidents of online exploitation, solicitation, and enticement-type crimes against children to NCMEC. The NCMEC website can be accessed via the ICAC Task Force website. For reporting crimes involving your child as a victim through the Internet or other electronic means, please contact your local Indiana law enforcement agency.
To access the ICAC Task Force website, visit: https://www.in.gov/isp/icactf/
It is important to note that all criminal defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.