Repeat Offender Pleads Guilty to Knowingly Possessing Visual Representations of Children Engaging in Sexually Explicit Behavior | USAO-EDCA
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — William Richter, 38, of Shasta County, pleaded guilty today to possessing visual depictions of the sexual exploitation of minors, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.
According to court documents, Richter had been convicted of the same offense and was on federal supervision when he committed this new crime on July 23, 2020. On June 6, 2013, Richter was sentenced to 51 months in prison in his previous case. In July 2020, Richter was on probation when a law enforcement officer arrested Richter for a traffic violation. A smart phone was discovered hidden in the cover of Richter’s driver’s seat. Under the terms of his supervised release, Richter was not allowed to use the Internet or own a smartphone. Forensic analysis revealed that Richter had at least 51 explicit pre-pubescent photographs on his phone, one of which depicted child sexual abuse. The victims in the images were from places outside of California, such as the Philippines, Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Ecuador, Slovenia, Sweden, Pennsylvania, Alabama, Virginia , Florida, Tennessee, Utah and Delaware. Richter had installed programs such as Kik Messenger, VLC medial player, TOR browser, Yo Live, Telegram, and Mega on his unauthorized phone, and accessed websites that likely hosted sexually explicit behavior.
This case is the product of an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations and the Shasta County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant US Attorney Christina McCall is pursuing the case.
Richter is due to be sentenced by U.S. District Judge John A. Mendez on July 12, 2022. He faces a maximum statutory sentence of 20 years in prison and a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years, due to his prior conviction for the same offense. . The actual sentence, however, will be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of all applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood brings together federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about the Safe Childhood Project, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc. Click on the “Resources” tab for information on Internet safety education.