News and Press Releases

Timothy Bruce Ruddle Sentenced in U.S. District Cour

Monday, April 27, 2009

Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Great Falls, on April 27, 2009, before U.S. District Judge Sam E. Haddon, TIMOTHY BRUCE RUDDLE, a 44-year-old resident of Lewistown, appeared for sentencing. RUDDLE was sentenced to a term of:

  • Prison: 210 months
  • Special Assessment: $100
  • Forfeiture: computer equipment
  • Supervised Release: life

RUDDLE was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to receipt of child pornography.

In an Offer of Proof filed by the United States, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

In late December 2007, a then14-year-old girl reported that she had been repeatedly sexually abused over a number of years by her father, RUDDLE, while the family lived in Lewistown. During the investigation, the victim also disclosed that her father had child pornography movies on his computer and had shown at least one to her.

Law enforcement agents in Lewistown seized RUDDLE'S computer and related media, including CDs. A forensic examination found numerous images and movies of child pornography that RUDDLE had received via the Internet. They included images of children clearly prepubescent or under age 12, as well as children engaged in sadistic or masochistic abuse or other depictions of violence.

Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that RUDDLE will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, RUDDLE does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for "good behavior." However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd prosecuted the case for the United States.

The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Lewistown Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Montana Division of Criminal Investigation.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. In February 2006, the Department of Justice launched Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the 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



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