United States Attorney Joe Kelly announced that Mark Ringland, 53, was sentenced on Monday, June 3, 2019, to 168 months in federal prison to be followed by 10 years of supervised release by Senior U.S. District Judge Laurie Smith-Camp in Omaha. A jury convicted Ringland of Receiving Child Pornography after a two-day trial that took place in February. There is no parole in the federal system.
Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Child Exploitation Task Force received information in the spring of 2017 from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, that a specific email address was receiving child pornography. The investigators were able to determine that it was Ringland’s email. He was arrested on September 1, 2017, and had a cell phone and iPad in his possession. The investigators seized both devices for which they had an authorized search warrant. Searches were done and investigators located more than 900 images of what they believed to be child pornography between the two devices. It was determined that at least one of the images was received by Ringland between April 1, 2017 and September 1, 2017. On the date of his arrest Ringland told the investigators he downloaded child pornography as a “pill for pedophilia,” that is, he looked at the images so that he would not act out himself on children. At his sentencing hearing he blamed Google for providing a forum for child pornography to exist. He claimed to be searching for the images so he could report to Congress they need to change laws with respect to child pornographic content.
This case was investigated by the FBI Child Exploitation Task Force, including members from the FBI, Nebraska State Patrol, and Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.