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February 05, 2019

New Jersey sheriff's deputy charged with sexual abuse of Lehigh Valley teen

Crime Sexual Abuse
Josh Padilla Source/Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office

Joshua Padilla, 33, of Eatontown, New Jersey.

A New Jersey sheriff's deputy is awaiting extradition to Pennsylvania after authorities say he sexually abused a 17-year-old girl and uploaded a video of their alleged sexual encounter on the internet. 

Joshua Padilla, 33, of Eatontown, Monmouth County, was arrested Friday by detectives with the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office, who received help from agents with the Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office and Pennsylvania State Police. 

Padilla, a sheriff's deputy in Middlesex County, came under the watch of law enforcement last month when Pennsylvania State Police received a tip that a man allegedly had sexual contact with a teenager in Northampton County. 

The man, later identified as Padilla, allegedly contacted the teenager in April or May of 2018 via the website 

Padilla was aware the victim was underage at the time of the alleged encounter, according to prosecutors, and he recorded it with his cell phone. Police received a tip after the video was uploaded to the same website, where it was viewed and shared by other users of the site. 

During the investigation, an undercover agent posing as a 14-year-old girl contacted Padilla through social media and text messaging, police said. Padilla allegedly sent the agent explicit photos, asked for them in returned and suggested he wanted to meet the purported 14-year-old girl. 

Padilla faces felony charges including unlawful contact with a minor, obscene materials and other sexual performances, sexual abuse of children and related child pornography charges.