Woman filmed herself sexually abusing child, agents say

Woman filmed herself sexually abusing child, agents say

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SALT LAKE CITY — A Beaver County woman has been arrested and accused of filming herself abusing a 2-year-old child and then sending the video to someone out of state.

Mary Jean Royce, 26, was arrested Wednesday for investigation of two counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, and 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.

The investigation of Royce began last fall when the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children detected child pornography being distributed between Facebook accounts, according to a police affidavit.

After identifying Royce as a suspect, the Internet Crimes Against Children task force of the Utah Attorney General’s Office served a search warrant on her residence in Beaver County on Wednesday, the affidavit states.

“Royce admitted to owning the reported social media account. Royce also admitted to recording videos of herself sexually abusing (a young girl). Royce admitted she recorded at least three to four videos of her (abusing the girl) and then sending the videos to a male in another state,” according to the affidavit. “On-scene forensics of Royce’s cellphone showed over 50 files of child pornography.”

Investigators have requested Royce be held without bail.

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Pat Reavy is a longtime police and courts reporter. He joined the KSL.com team in 2021, after many years of reporting at the Deseret News and KSL NewsRadio before that.


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