News and Press Releases

Minnesota Man Sentenced to 12 Years For Distributing Child Pornography

June 18, 2012

Madison, Wis. - John W. Vaudreuil, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Matt Hendrickson, 23, St. Cloud, Minn., was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge William Conley to 12 years in prison for distributing child pornography. Hendrickson pleaded guilty to this charge on November 7, 2011.

A search warrant was executed at Hendrickson's dorm room at the University of Wisconsin in Madison on September 23, 2010. Officers found a laptop computer containing a peer-to-peer file sharing program with over 19,000 files containing child pornography that Hendrickson was distributing via GigaTribe. The majority of the images contained males under the age of 18 engaged in sexually explicit conduct, as well as sadistic and masochistic conduct in which young children were tied by their hands and feet and had tape across their faces and objects inserted in their body cavities.

The University of Wisconsin Police computer forensic team also located all of Hendrickson’s chat sessions with his “friends” on GigaTribe. These chat sessions show Hendrickson talking with his "friends” about sharing, viewing, and downloading images of child pornography using the GigaTribe program.

Officers found in a dresser in the room a package of boys underwear, along with items related to sexual activity. On a bookshelf in the room, officers found a pamphlet-style booklet titled Lollipops and Mushroom Clouds. On the cover of the booklet was the name Matthew Hendrickson, Section 302. Page two of the booklet stated it is based on a true story. The booklet contains a discussion of pedophilia and an argument as to why pedophilia is just another form of sexual deviance, and should not be considered immoral or unnatural.

At today's sentencing, Judge Conley found that Hendrickson engaged in manipulative and deceitful conduct that included multiple lies to the Court and to the Probation Officer in an attempt to obstruct the investigation. Judge Conley noted that Hendrickson also lied to his therapists, mental health counselors, his parents, and his criminal defense attorney all in an effort to stay out of jail. Judge Conley found that the manipulation continued today.

Judge Conley told Hendrickson he is a dangerous pedophile and is a danger to the community and especially to young children.

The charge against Hendrickson is the result of an investigation by the UW-Madison Police Department and Federal Bureau of Investigation, with the assistance of the St. Cloud Police Department.


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