Friday, September 29, 2023
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The Awful Human Race

BALTIMORE (CN) - A federal grand jury indicted a Maryland man of conspiring with a Californian to abuse a 6-week-old prematurely born child and send videos of it to the Marylander.

Stephen H. Schaffner, 34, of Greensboro, Md., is accused of conspiring with Michael Lutts, 50, of San Diego, "to abuse a six-week-old foster child and transmit recorded images and videos of the abuse to Schaffner," the U.S. Attorney's Office in Baltimore said Thursday.

Lutts is facing federal charges in San Diego, prosecutors said.

Lutts was a pediatric nurse at a San Diego County hospital and also a foster parent.

Lutts brought the 6-week preemie home on Aug. 4, and texted Schaffner images of the baby that night, Baltimore prosecutors said in a statement.

"Over the next several hours, Schaffner allegedly exchanged numerous graphic and sexually explicit messages with Lutts about Lutts engaging in sexually explicit conduct with the infant," the U.S. Attorney's Office said. "Lutts sent Schaffner videos with the infant, including images of an adult performing oral sex on the infant. Schaffner is alleged to have directed Lutts to sexually abuse the infant in order to produce sexually explicit images and videos and send them to Schaffner."

Schaffner appeared in Baltimore Federal Court Wednesday and was detained. If convicted of all 10 counts against him, he faces up to 285 years in prison.

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