Fort Bridger man faces arraignment for alleged sexual exploitation of children

Mugshot cutline: Tyelure Schroeder is set to appear in Third District Court for 11 counts of sexual exploitation of children on Tuesday, as well as a sex offender registration charge. He will be arraigned before District Court Judge James Kaste.

EVANSTON — Fort Bridger resident Tyelure Schroeder is scheduled for arraignment on Tuesday, Jan. 10, before 3rd District Court Judge James Kaste, as he is charged with 11 counts of alleged sexual exploitation of children and failure to register as a sex offender. 

According to the sworn affidavit of Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation Special Agent Ryan Hieb, a cybertip linked to Schroeder was received on Aug. 9, from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). 

An account allegedly associated with Schroeder had uploaded 42 files depicting the sexual exploitation of children. A phone number and date of birth matching Schroeder’s information were also listed.  

Hieb searched for the account in IP logs, and most of the account’s addresses seemed to use virtual private networks (VPN), or mobile wireless IP addresses. VPNs make it difficult for unauthorized people to view web traffic. Schroeder allegedly used Proton Mail, an encrypted mail service that prevents hackers and Proton employees from reading clients’ messages.  

Hieb located the service provider connected to the phone number in the NCMEC tip and requested a federal summons for subscriber information. The internet service provider reviewed 14 files and flagged three others. An automated categorization based on NCMEC’s review identified 34 images as “apparent child pornography,” six images as “child pornography (unconfirmed)” and two as “unclothed children.” 

Hieb reviewed the 14 files which had been previously reviewed by the service provider and determined the files depicted early pubescent and prepubescent females. Hieb then observed the images flagged by the computer categorization.

On his latest sex offender registration form, dated Sept. 20, 2021, Schroeder listed a phone number and email address matching those on the NCMEC report.  

Hieb read in FBI reports that, in 2014, user “tyelure” uploaded at least 14 images constituting child pornographic material. Photobucket had sent a tip to NCMEC, and the FBI had geolocated an IP address used in that tip to the Lyman area. 

When interrogated in 2014, Schroeder claimed he had first discovered child pornography by mistake, while searching for “younger looking girls” on the internet. He said he would search for it intentionally while inebriated. He was sentenced in March 2015 for possession of child pornography in Wyoming. He received 24 months in prison before five years of supervised release. 

On Sept. 27, 2022, Hieb received a search warrant for evidence related to child exploitation within Schroeder’s Gmail account having learned that Google submitted the tip on June 24. Google cooperated, giving Hieb all relevant information. Hieb discovered a NordVPN account containing the information he was searching for. Hieb’s affidavit reads, “The account contained 31 image files constituting child pornography. Sixteen of those files depicted infants/ toddlers.”

Hieb found that Schroeder’s latest sex offender registration did not report his email as required by state statute. Hieb obtained search warrants on Dec. 5, for Schroeder’s residence and person. 

On Dec. 7, Hieb contacted Schroeder at his workplace. Schroeder reportedly fled and locked himself into the restroom, only to exit when Hieb began to force the door open. A methamphetamine pipe was found after Schroeder left. Shroeder told officers that it was normal for him to hide in a restroom when unknown people asked for him by name. Schroeder was then placed in custody for an audio-recorded interview.

When asked about his email addresses, Schroeder claimed not to remember any of them. He believed his Google account had been hacked. When asked what the account name meant to him, the affidavit states Schroeder hesitated before responding, “Uh… I mean… that sounds like a randomly generated name or something.” When told he was under investigation for child pornography, he repeatedly claimed that his account had been hacked. 

Each count of exploitation carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years and a fine of $10,000, in addition to routine legal fees. The failure to register charge comes with a penalty of up to five years incarceration and a $1,000 fine.

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