JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Dennis William Sheffield, Jr., 52, was sentenced to 16 years and 3 months in federal prison for receipt of child sex abuse materials.
According to the Department of Justice, Sheffield was also ordered to serve a life term of supervised release and to register as a sex offender. In addition, he was ordered to pay $15,000 in restitution to victims of his offenses. Sheffield had pleaded guilty on December 16, 2022.
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According to the plea agreement, in February 2022, Homeland Security Investigations began investigating Sheffield in response to a CyberTip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The CyberTip indicated that child sex abuse material had been uploaded to a search engine. An IP address for the individual who had uploaded the materials was traced to Sheffield and law enforcement learned that Sheffield was listed as a predator on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Sexual Offenders and Predators registry because of two convictions in 1996 of attempted sexual battery on a child under 12 years old.
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On March 3, 2022, based on the CyberTip and identification of Sheffield as the subject, law enforcement obtained a federal search warrant for Sheffield’s residence. The following day, authorities executed the search warrant and encountered Sheffield, who was holding a phone in his hand. A preliminary examination of the cellphone revealed multiple files of child sex abuse materials on the phone.
Sheffield admitted to having a problem and that he liked looking at child sex abuse images, which he admitted to having viewed as recently as a couple of days earlier. Sheffield also admitted to saving some of the images on his phone.
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