Soccer coach 'found with more than 400 child abuse files on phone including babies as young as 10 months'

Soccer coach 'found with more than 400 child abuse files on phone including babies as young as 10 months'

A SOCCER coach has been arrested and charged after cops found more than 400 child abuse files on his phone, with the children involved as young as 10-months-old.

Shawn Fitzgerald, who is also a high school teacher and a director of youth services at a methodist church in Bartow, Florida, was arrested by police on Friday evening.

The investigation was launched in February after Polk County sheriff's office received a report from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that Kik messenger had been used to upload a video depicting child abuse, Crime Online reports.

Fitzgerald, 46, was arrested after cops executed a search warrant, and police have charged him with 408 counts of possessing child pornography.

He is being held in jail with a bond of more than $2million.

"He is a bad turkey who is going to spend Thanksgiving in a county jail," Polk County sheriff Grady Judd told reporters today.

"We saw horrific acts.

"Everything from children as young as 10-months-old and that were engaged in some form of illicit, horrible, sexual conduct as a baby up to the early teens," sheriff Judd said.

Cops said they found a 'Calculator Vault' app, which is a smartphone application that looks like a calculator but hides saved images.

Fitzgerald said he used the vault to save images of an extramarital affair and couldn't remember the password, but a forensic examination found child sex abuse images.

Police say they have uncovered no evidence so far that any of the images or files were produced locally, or that Fitzgerald carried out any illegal acts on children.

"We will bring this man to justice," sheriff Judd said.

"Our goal is that he sits in prison for a very long time. Our prayer is that there are no child victims.

"Our other prayer is that we can identify these children who have already been victimized.”

Investigators are still conducting searches of Fitzgerald's electronic devices and the sheriff's office revealed that more charges are possible.

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