MORRISVILLE, PA --A Pennsylvania man, accused of raping multiple children over 40 years, faced a judge for the first time on Tuesday morning.
William Thomas, 58, issued a flat denial to the disturbing allegations during his preliminary hearing.
He appeared via video from prison.
Thomas was arrested late last week on child pornography charges, and five additional counts of child rape were filed on Monday.
VIDEO: D.A. Matt Weintraub discusses child rape arrest
In court, Thomas told Judge Jan Vislosky, "I'm scared to death, ma'am."
He said he "never inflicted any pain on a child, nor would I want to."
Thomas did not have an attorney, and the judge repeatedly advised him to contact the public defender's office, which has an office at the prison.
Thomas told her, "They are not going to help me here" and later said, "I need someone to believe I'm not the evil, disgusting person people make me out to be."
He went on to tell the judge, "They haven't let me sleep in days, weeks, whatever."
Thomas was a handyman at Midway Village Trailer Park on Bristol Pike, where he lived.
Investigators believe he's been assaulting children ranging in age from two to 10 for the last 40 years. Authorities released photos of Thomas going back more than 10 years in hopes of helping potential victims recognize him.
Police say they know of at least six victims, including a relative. Court papers show Thomas kept detailed notes about his victims and what he did to them.
Investigators seized more than 1,000 sexually explicit and nude photos of children from inside his trailer and more than 1,000 pairs of girl's underwear. The evidence they found took days to process.
"And these pairs of underwear were displayed almost throughout his mobile trailer home," said D.A. Matt Weintraub during a news conference on Monday.
"This was a perverse shrine to his criminal conquests, and we are merely scratching the surface of those conquests today," Weintraub continued. "To be blunt about it, this is a real life boogeyman."
Investigators say Thomas was a "monumental" trophy collector, and the fear is there may be more victims.
Police want anyone who may have hired him, operating under the business name of Thomas Construction, to contact the D.A.'s office or Falls Twp. police.
Falls Township Seargeant Christopher Clark at 215-302-3315 or email@example.com
Bucks County Detective Lt. Robert Gorman at 215-340-8141 or firstname.lastname@example.org