Ex-Marion HS guidance counselor indicted on child porn charge

Crime

MARION, Ind. (WANE) — The former guidance counselor at Marion High School has been indicted in federal court on allegations he got a minor to send him sexually explicit pictures by pretending to be a sick teen.

Ryan C. Vermilion

Ryan C. Vermilion, 46, of Marion was indicted by a grand jury with a single count of Production of Child Pornography.

Vermilion was initially charged in Marion County with 12 counts of Vicarious Sexual Gratification and 12 counts of Child Exploitation.

According to court documents associated with the case, Vermilion was a guidance counselor at Marion High School. On Feb. 18, 2020, officials at the school seized a school-issued iPad from a student.

On the iPad, they found “sexual” conversations on Google Hangouts along with pictures of the girl and what she believed was a teenage boy. Officials then contacted the school resource officer and the Indiana Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline, according to court records.

The girl told investigators that between December 2019 and January 2020, she met a person on a website called Omegal and began messaging who she believed was a 14-year-old boy. The teenager went by the name “Will Ryan” and asked to move the conversation to Google Hangouts. Another person known only as Will Ryan’s uncle also began messaging the girl and soon told her Will had died of cancer.

The affidavit said both talked on the app for three months and sent hundreds of explicit messages and numerous videos and photos of the girl nude and doing lewd act. Police also found a picture of the man who appeared to be in his 40s.

Officials sent the photo to the Indiana Intelligence Fusion Center, which led them to Vermilion.

Vermilion was suspended by Marion Community Schools after the allegations surfaced.

The Marion County case against Vermilion was moved to U.S. District Court this month.

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