Columbus man accused of coercing minors, police seeking more victims

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COLUMBUS (WCMH) — A Columbus man has been charged with multiple crimes related to the sexual exploitation of minors, a federal grand jury has decided.

Michael T. Sutherin, 21, of Columbus, was charged with producing, advertising for, distributing, receiving, and possessing child pornography and coercing a minor in a 13-count indictment filed Friday.

According to court documents, Sutherin used social media sites like Snapchat and Instagram to coerce at least four girls aged 12-15 to send him sexually explicit videos of themselves.

If found guilty, Sutherin could face a minimum of 15 years up to life in prison.

The United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio and the FBI worked together on the case.

Investigators also released profile photos used by Sutherin on different social media sites, shown below.

Neighbors in Sutherin’s north Columbus neighborhood reacted to the arrest.

“It’s very scary because I have two children that are close in age,” said mother Sara Timms. “Makes you wonder was it someone I knew that was a victim .”

“It’s frustrating, it’s scary,” said resident Matt Lookabaugh. “Glad they got him. Just wonder how long it took and how many kids were ruined by it.”

Law enforcement officials are asking anyone else with information on this case or any other possible victims to contact the FBI at 614-849-1765.

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