September 13, 2013

Lehigh County man charged with sexually assaulting 7-year old girl, manufacturing child pornography

HARRISBURG - Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today announced the arrest of a Lehigh County man accused of sexually assaulting a 7-year old girl and using Internet file-sharing programs to download, manufacture and distribute child pornography.

Ralph FacendaAttorney General Kathleen G. Kane identified the defendant as Ralph Facenda, 43, 1247 Old 22, Lenhartsville.

Agents conducting an online investigation found numerous online files that were shared from Facenda's computer, depicting children under the age of 18 posing naked in sexually suggestive positions or engaging in extremely sexually graphic acts.

Kane said that following Facenda's arrest, agents from the Attorney General's Computer Forensics Unit analyzed Facenda's cell phone and discovered sexually graphic photos and video of an adult male and a pre-pubescent female. Agents determined that Facenda allegedly was the adult in the images based on tattoos that were consistent with those on his left hand and fingers.

According to the criminal complaint, Facenda is accused of assaulting the 7-year old daughter of a friend, while he was living with the victim's parents in the Kutztown area. He allegedly used his cell phone to take photos, as well as video of the assault.

Facenda was arrested on Thursday, Sept. 4, 2013 by agents from the Attorney General's Child Predator Unit and preliminarily arraigned at the Lehigh Valley Correctional Facility. A preliminary hearing has yet to be scheduled.

Facenda is charged with 50 counts of possession of child pornography, 17 counts of sexual abuse of children for the manufacture of child pornography, one count of indecent assault, one count of distribution of child pornography and one count of criminal use of a communication facility.

He will be prosecuted in Lehigh County by Chief Deputy Attorney General Ellen M. Granahan of the Attorney General's Child Predator Section.

Kane thanked Lehigh County Children and Youth for their assistance with the investigation.

Reporting Internet Predators
Suspected Internet predators can be reported to the Attorney General's Child Predator Section by calling the Child Predator Hotline at 1-800-385-1044.

Internet safety tips are available on the "Operation Safe Surf" section of www.attorneygeneral.gov. Organizations interested in materials, speakers or presentations should contact the Attorney General's Education and Outreach Unit at 1-800-525-7642 or via email at education@attorneygeneral.gov.