Man Found With Rosie O'Donnell's Daughter Chelsea Has Been Arrested on Child Endangerment Charges

by Emily Krauser 9:20 AM PDT, August 22, 2015
Photo: Getty Images

The man found with Rosie O'Donnell's daughter Chelsea after she went missing was arrested at his New Jersey home on Friday.

Steven Sheerer of Barneget, a small town in the Jersey Shore area, has been charged with third-degree counts of distribution of obscenity to a minor and endangering the welfare of a child.

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Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph D. Coronato said the phone of the 17-year-old victim, who was not directly named due to her age, was retrieved with consent from her mother by the High Tech Crime Unit (HTCU) on Friday. Police agencies also seized a computer and additional digital equipment from Sheerer's house on Village Drive.

"Examination of the phone by the HTCU revealed evidence of inappropriate communications over the last several weeks between Sheerer and the minor," Coronato's office said in a statement.

If the 25-year-old is convicted, he can face up to five years in New Jersey State Prison. He is currently being held at the Ocean County Jail on $40,000 cash bail. The court also mandated Nicole's Law, which means Sheerer cannot have any contact with the victim's family.

The former View co-host reported her daughter missing on Tuesday, believing she had run away from their home in Nyack, New York, about a week earlier. Chelsea was found later that evening in Barnegat, about 115 miles south of Nyack, at the home Sheerer shares with his mother. It is believed that Chelsea originally met Sheerer online.

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Earlier in the week, O'Donnell tweeted a link to a 2012 article about Sheerer, then 22, and his criminal past.

At the time, Sheerer was being charged with third-degree possession of heroin with the intent to distribute, third-degree possession of heroin, third-degree endangering the welfare of a child and possession of drug paraphernalia.