PORTLAND, Ore. - A former guidance counselor at Troutdale Elementary School was sentenced Monday morning to 97 months’ imprisonment and was ordered to pay a $15,000 fine following his pleas of guilty to one count of receiving child pornography and one count of possessing child pornography. United States District Court Chief Judge Ancer L. Haggerty ordered the fine remitted to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, a non-profit agency located in Alexandria, Virginia, dedicated to identifying and locating missing and exploited children. Knudsen will be on supervised release for three years following the completion of his prison term.
William Arthur Knudsen, 65, was contacted by federal and state investigators after child pornography was discovered on a computer he had taken into a Gresham computer shop for repairs. Investigators located and seized more computer equipment, along with hundreds of VHS, 8mm, and HI-8 video tapes, compact discs, and digital video discs (DVDs) at Knudsen’s residence. Investigators also seized 51 loose leaf binders containing printed images of child pornography. Over 800,000 images of child pornography were discovered on Knudsen’s computer equipment.
“This defendant is one of the most prolific collectors of child pornography that we’ve seen in Oregon,” stated United States Attorney Karin J. Immergut. “Individuals who seek to sexually exploit children should know that they will be held accountable and aggressively prosecuted for their actions. Thanks to the hard work of ICE agents and the Gresham Police Department, this defendant was brought to justice.”
At the sentencing hearing, Assistant United States Attorney Gary Sussman described Knudsen’s collection of child pornography as the most extensive ever seized in Oregon. It included numerous homemade images, which Knudsen created by superimposing non-pornographic images of young children into images of adult and child pornography. There was no evidence that Knudsen sexually assaulted any child, or that he personally distributed child pornography.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and the Gresham Police Department, and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Gary Sussman. It was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys Offices, 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 identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.