East Idaho man accused of child sexual exploitation
An Idaho Falls man was arrested for sexual exploitation of a child, Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden announced today in a recent news release.
Samuel S. Gale, 32, was arrested Wednesday following an investigation by the Idaho Internet Crimes Against Children Unit. The release said Gale was booked into Bonneville County Jail following his arrest.
The investigation into Gale began in September after the Internet Crimes Unit received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
Investigators found more than 2,150 photos and videos of child pornography in a Dropbox file owned by Gale. The account had been accessed 37 times between Feb. 16, 2017 and Aug. 29, 2017, according to a probable cause affidavit. Gale had been accessing the files using a work cellphone. He was employed as a maintenance worker at a local apartment complex.
Law enforcement obtained a search warrant Wednesday and searched Gale’s house and cars for any digital storage devices he owned. A detective found Gale had 56 images of child pornography saved directly to the phone he had used to access the Dropbox account.
The photos described in court documents depicted minor boys ranging in age from 6 to 12 years old forced to engage in sex acts with each other. An image from the Dropbox account depicted an adult man raping a girl estimated to be 2 to 4 years old.
Gale was charged with five counts of willfully possessing or accessing child sexually exploitative material, each punishable with up to 10 years in prison. He was arraigned today and issued a $100,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Aug. 1 in Bonneville County Courthouse.
The Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office, Idaho Falls Police Department and the United States Postal Inspection Service all assisted in the investigation.