Martin #sheriff, #FBI look into #child porn #allegations against #Army #recruiter


MARTIN COUNTY — A teenager from Palm Beach County sent several nude photos and videos of herself to a U.S. Army recruiter.

Now, authorities in Martin County are investigating whether similar interactions happened with at least one former teen there.

In the Palm Beach case, Danilo Fernandez was charged on April 27 by the Federal Bureau of Investigation with attempted production, receipt of child pornography and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity. Fernandez is a recruiter in Martin, St. Lucie and Palm Beach counties.

The federal affidavit also alleges a sexual assault by Fernandez on the teen from Palm Beach. That aspect of the case remains under investigation.

The Martin County Sheriff’s Office announced Friday it was investigating allegations from a second teen about online sexual activity with Fernandez.

“He had the opportunity to make contact with a lot of people,” Martin County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Christine Weiss said.

Detectives were talking with several people who would have had contact with Fernandez in Martin and St. Lucie counties.

In Palm Beach County, Fernandez’s accuser attended Dwyer High School in Palm Beach Gardens. In October and November, the 17-year-old girl sent five videos of herself engaged in sexual activity to Fernandez via Snapchat, according to the affidavit. The pair also engaged in sexual talk, aka sexting, in their messages, records show.

“Can I trust you with this…” Fernandez wrote to the teen, according to the affidavit. “I am not trying to go to jail here.”

Detectives in Martin County were still investigating the allegations made against Fernandez by a former Martin County School District student, Weiss said.

“Protecting the safety and security of our students stands among the most important responsibilities we have at the district,” Superintendent Laurie J. Gaylord said in a state. “Immediately after learning of the accusations against this individual — who is not and was not a district employee — we followed up with law enforcement and school administration. We only recently were made aware of alleged inappropriate electronic communications from the accused toward a former Martin County student.”

The Sheriff’s Office did not say which school Fernandez’s accuser attended.

“We view such allegations seriously and will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement’s investigation,” Gaylord said in a statement.

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