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New charges involving the sexual performance of a minor have been brought against a Meade County man accused of sending explicit text messages to a girl younger than 16 years old.
Michael T. Shutt, 46, of Brandenburg was indicted in November on charges of use of a minor in a sexual performance, unlawful use of electronic means to induce a minor to engage in sexual or prohibited activities, possession of a matter portraying a sexual performance by a minor, and first-degree persistent felony offense.
All counts involve the same girl, according to the indictment.
Investigators with the Hardin County Sheriff’s Office initially arrested Shutt on Oct. 19 in Radcliff. Following a police interview, he was charged with unlawful use of electronic means.
According to the indictment, Shutt “employed, consented to, authorized or induced” the girl to engage in sexual conduct in a photograph, which he then kept in his possession.
The investigation into the sexual text messages started in September when the girl’s father filed a complaint at the sheriff’s office, HCSO Detective Rex Allaman said.
According to Allaman, the man supplied investigators with the first name “Michael” and a phone number, and the sheriff’s office sent a search warrant to the phone company.
In October, Allaman said he received a suspicious text message on his cell phone that read “What panties are you wearing?”
Investigators realized it was sent from the same number as the sexual text message complaint filed in September, the detective said. Allaman and Sgt. Bill Wilson of the sheriff’s office responded to the text message and enticed Shutt to a meeting in Radcliff where he was arrested.
“This is a very odd case,” Allaman said. “There’s nothing normal or usual about how it went down.”
Allaman said during Shutt’s interview he allowed investigators to search his phone and pointed to several photos believed to be the girl.
During his interview, Shutt also stated he would randomly dial numbers and send sexual messages, the detective said.
It appears the behavior had been going on for some time, Allaman said, and it’s possible there are other minors involved.
The use of a minor in a sexual performance is a Class B felony, which is punishable by 10 to 20 years in prison if convicted, according to Kentucky Revised Statutes.
According to court records, Shutt was on active probation in three Meade County felony theft cases that concluded Sept. 26, less a month before he was arrested on the newest charges.
Shutt remains lodged at the Hardin County Detention Center in lieu of a $5,000 cash bond.
He is scheduled to appear for arraignment Jan. 8 in Hardin Circuit Court.
Sarah Bennett can be reached at (270) 505-1750 or email@example.com.