Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina and Pemberton Township Police Chief Jason Watters announced that a 19-year-old Browns Mills man has been charged with possessing and distributing child sexual abuse material.
Dawson Simons, of the 300 block of Seminole Trail, was charged with three counts of Endangering the Welfare of a Child (two Second Degree and one Third Degree). He was lodged in the Burlington County Jail in Mount Holly pending an appearance in Superior Court. The case will be prepared for presentation to a grand jury for possible indictment.
Simons was taken into custody Friday morning at his residence following the execution of a search warrant. Electronic devices seized during the search will be examined by detectives from the BCPO High-Tech Crimes Unit.
The investigation began in September after the BCPO High-Tech Crimes Unit received information regarding Simons’s online activities from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The investigation revealed that Simons was using social media and an online file storage system to collect and distribute child sexual abuse material.
The investigation was conducted by the BCPO High-Tech Crimes Unit, with assistance from United States Homeland Security Investigations – Cherry Hill Office, the Pemberton Township Police Department and the Evesham Township Police Department. The lead investigator was BCPO Detective Andrew Ridolfi.
The BCPO High-Tech Crimes Unit and HSI – Cherry Hill are members of the New Jersey State Police Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force. The BCPO also belongs to the New Jersey State Police Cyber Terrorism Task Force.
All persons are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.