KOKOMO, Ind. – “Get it over with.”
That’s what police said a man told them after they served a search warrant at his Kokomo home this week in connection with a child exploitation investigation.
According to the Kokomo Police Department, officers received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children on Sept. 7, 2021. That tip involved Snapchat and two videos that included child sexual abuse material.
Investigators were able to use information obtained from Snapchat to trace the IP address to a home in Kokomo, according to court documents.
On Tuesday, police obtained a search warrant for a residence on Treaty Lane. With help from the Howard County Sheriff’s Office, Kokomo police seized numerous electronic devices.
Police arrested 39-year-old Christopher Lee Ashcroft, who’s charged with child exploitation and possession of child pornography.
According to court documents, police talked to Ashcroft about the search warrant. During the conversation, Ashcroft initially said he may have come across child pornography while searching for pornographic materials online but initially denied actively seeking it out.
The officer didn’t think Ashcroft was being “fully truthful” and told him he believed he was holding something back, according to court documents. Ashcroft then said he “looked at child pornography” and “has a collection on his phone.”
Ashcroft told investigators he “gets on the dark web and downloads it,” adding that his collection was about 250 gigabytes.
Ashcroft told police he’d prefer to be taken to jail right then in order to “get it over with.” Police decided to take him into custody on the spot, noting that Ashcroft lived in a home with a roommate who had two children.
Ashcroft’s roommate described him as a “video game streamer.”
An officer searched Ashcroft’s phone and immediately discovered child exploitation material, including the phone’s background image. He had “numerous videos” on the phone depicting minors engaging in sex acts, according to court documents.
Electronics seized from Ashcroft included his cellphone, desktop computer and an older cellphone discovered in his bedroom. Police also located drug paraphernalia and said additional charges could be forthcoming.
Ashcroft’s initial hearing is set for Sept. 19, according to online court records.