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In September, it was announced that one of the stars of the Netflix docuseries “Cheer” was arrested and charged with possession of child pornography. Jerry Harris was charged with one count of production of child pornography and scheduled to appear in federal court soon after the arrest. Here, We want to discuss this case as well as some of the reasons why Harris still remains in jail on these charges.
According to the criminal complaint filed against Harris, the 21-year-old was accused of “enticing an underage boy to produce sexually explicit videos and photos of himself.” The complaint says that the alleged victim was 13 at the time of the incident.
Jerry Harris had allegedly been facing accusations of sexual misconduct after being named in a sexual exploitation lawsuit earlier in September. The civil lawsuit states that Harris attempted to engage more than one boy in sex. The complaint says that the victims’ mother found inappropriate texts from Harris on a child’s cell phone.
Harris was a fan favorite on the docuseries Cheer, a show that followed cheerleaders from a Texas college as they prepared for a national competition. An attorney in the civil case said that Harris met the clients through the cheerleading world.
As of this writing, a federal judge has determined that Harris is a danger to the community and that he should remain in jail pending trial on the charges of coercing boys to send obscene photos and videos and for soliciting sex from minors at cheerleading competitions.
Attorneys for Harris had asked the federal judge to release him on home detention and under the supervision of various “cheer moms” who had agreed to monitor him and keep him from using the internet. However, the judge said that the situation is extremely serious and that Harris had allegedly admitted to the FBI to sexual misconduct with five to ten victims. The judge also said that she was concerned about allegations that Harris continued to contact boys over the internet even after he learned that he was under investigation by law enforcement.
If you or somebody you care about has been arrested or is under investigation for any charges related to child pornography, you need to seek legal assistance as soon as possible. At Okabe & Haushalter, our award-winning team has vast experience handling these cases. We understand child pornography and sex crime charges in Illinois, and we are ready to defend you in court. By contacting our attorney as soon as you know about an investigation or as soon as an arrest has occurred, we will be able to step in and help ensure that you take all appropriate steps to bolster your defense.
We will also make sure that our attorneys are the ones that speak to prosecutors and law enforcement officials, not you. Using the case described above as a guideline, you could see how speaking to law enforcement officials can work against you throughout the entirety of your case.