SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — New York State Police and Manlius Police have arrested a Van Buren man they say tried to sexually exploit children who go to Pine Grove Middle School in the ESM school district.
24-year-old Louis E. Fratangelo Jr. was arrested and charged with multiple crimes as a result of the investigation.
The investigation began after multiple middle school-aged children (ages 10 to 14) reported to Manlius Police that an unknown person hacked into their Snapchat accounts and stole naked images of them.
Investigators say Fratangelo would then would extort the children for additional nude photos under the threat of sending the ones he had to their families and friends at the school.
In one instance, police say Fratangelo identified the location of the middle school child and parked outside the child’s home.
State Police and the FBI executed a search warrant at Fratangelo’s residence and found two illegal AR-style firearms, body armor, child pornography, and illegal fireworks.
The New York State Police Computer Crime Unit (CCU) conducted forensic previews on seized items and located thousands of images of child pornography (infant to pre-teen), child pornography which the state police alleged Fratangelo produced with a local child, and evidence of narcotics and firearms trafficking.
Information was developed that the suspect may have utilized numerous Snapchat accounts not associated with him, including “alex_jones7858”.
Frantangelo was arrested and charged with the following (9) felony counts,(3) misdemeanors,(1) violation:
- (2) counts Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the 2nd degree, class “C” felony
- (1) count Use of a Child in a Sexual Performance, class “C” felony
- (2) counts Criminal Possession of a Firearm, class E” felony
- (1) count Criminal Sexual Act 3rd degree, class “E” felony
- (1) count Rape 3rd degree, class “E” felony
- (2) counts Possession of a Sexual Performance by a Child, class “E” felony
- (2) counts Unlawful Purchase of Body Armor, class “A” misdemeanor
- (1) count Endangering the Welfare of a Child, class “A” misdemeanor
- (1) count Unlawfully Dealing with Fireworks and Dangerous Fireworks, a violation
Frantangelo was arraigned and transported to the Onondaga County Justice Center, where he posted a $250,000 bond.
State Police believe there may be more victims and encourage concerned parents to contact State Police Investigator Gallo at (315) 366-6000 or Manlius Police.