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Press Release

Indy Man Sentenced to Over 28 Years in Federal Prison for Molesting and Exploiting 12-Year-Old Boy While Babysitting

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Indiana

INDIANAPOLIS- Ronald May, 54, of Indianapolis, has been sentenced to 340 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of a child.

According to court documents, the victim was a twelve-year old boy living with his mother in Indianapolis. In the spring of 2023, Ronald May and the mother worked at the same company. The mother was a store manager, and her duties occasionally required her to work overnight shifts. May volunteered to babysit her son while she was at work overnight.

Beginning on March 5, 2023, and continuing until April 28, 2023, May purchased items for the child, “wrestled” with him, required him to sleep in May’s bed together nude, showed the boy adult pornography, and discussed sexual activity with the child. Individuals with a sexual interest in children engage in these behaviors, often referred to as “grooming,” to build trusting relationships with potential victims and lower their defenses to sexual exploitation by adults.

May sexually assaulted the boy during the forced “wrestling” sessions. May also used his cellphone to take at least 39 sexually explicit images of the child.

On April 23, 2023, the mother discovered the abuse and reported May to police. After the police searched his home, May began to harass the mother by constantly calling and sending her text messages. May also drove by the mother’s home after the search and sent threatening messages including, “u can’t hide I know where u live.”

“This criminal’s actions are every parent’s nightmare. Every day, children are horrifically abused by predators like this defendant, who work insidiously to build trust—while hiding the worst of intentions,” said Zachary A. Myers, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Indiana. “The exploitation of our children is utterly unacceptable in a civilized society, and pedophiles like this one will be held accountable for their crimes. Thanks to the hard work of investigators and prosecutors, this man will never harm another child.”

The U.S. Secret Service and IMPD investigated this case. The sentence was imposed by Chief U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt. Chief Judge Pratt ordered that May be supervised by the U.S. Probation Office for 20 years following his release from federal prison and pay $10,000 in restitution to the child victim.

U.S. Attorney Myers thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Tiffany J. Preston, who prosecuted this case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.


Updated April 1, 2024

Project Safe Childhood