- The Washington Times - Monday, September 29, 2003


Fairfax County police are searching for a former youth soccer coach accused of secretly videotaping girls “in various stages of undress.”

Ralph D. Shipler, 61, is wanted on three counts of production of child pornography.

Police said Mr. Shipler coached a traveling girls soccer team based in Herndon. He was detained briefly in South Beaver, Pa., Wednesday after police saw him videotaping children at a nudist colony, Fairfax authorities said.

South Beaver police later discovered videotapes containing images of naked children. They called the FBI and Fairfax County police, and detectives who searched Mr. Shipler’s home on Ravenscraig Court found more videos.

According to a search warrant filed yesterday in Fairfax County Circuit Court, Mr. Shipler used hidden cameras to videotape the girls while they were using bathroom and shower facilities.

Police said he had drilled a hole in the garage wall adjoining the bathroom and scraped the backing off a mirror so he could videotape the girls.

Mr. Shipler recently resigned as coach of the girls’ team, citing personal reasons.

Warrants for Mr. Shipler’s arrest were obtained yesterday. He was last seen driving a 1995 Mazda Protege with Virginia license plates ZRJ 9921. Authorities describe him as white, about 5 feet 10 inches tall, weighing 230 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes.

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