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Press Release

Spokane Valley Man Sentenced To Twelve Years In Federal Prison For Possessing Child Pornography

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Washington

Spokane - Michael C. Ormsby, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, announced that Christopher Michael Ebner, age 38, of Spokane Valley, Washington, was sentenced today after having previously pleaded guilty on March 19, 2013 to possessing child pornography. Chief United States District Court Judge Rosanna Malouf Peterson sentenced Ebner to a twelve year term of imprisonment, to be followed by a life term of court supervision after he is released from Federal prison. In addition, Ebner was ordered to forfeit the computer he used to possess the child pornography images.

According to information disclosed during the court proceedings, in January of 2012, a Spokane Police Internet undercover investigation discovered that Ebner was sharing images of child pornography with other individuals, via the Internet, using a peer to peer file sharing program. On January 26, 2012, law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Ebner's residence in Spokane Valley. The officers discovered Ebner had downloaded well in excess of 400 images and 1,000 videos of child pornography onto his computer, which included images of minors under the age of twelve and sadistic and masochist images. Ebner's criminal history includes prior Washington State convictions in 2004 for Third Degree Rape of a Child and Possession of Depictions of a Minor Engaged in Sexually Explicit Conduct.

Michael C. Ormsby stated, "The United States Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of Washington is, and will continue to be, committed to prosecuting aggressively and seeking appropriate punishment for child pornography crimes. Prosecuting these types of crimes is particularly important because of the tender age of the innocent victims."

This case was pursued as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the United States Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys' Offices and the Criminal Division's Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. The Project Safe Childhood (PSC) Initiative has five major components:

  • Integrated federal, state, and local efforts to investigate and prosecute child exploitation cases, and to identify and rescue child victims;
  • Participation of PSC partners in coordinated national initiatives;
  • Increased federal enforcement in child pornography and enticement cases;
  • Training of federal, state, and local law enforcement agents; and
  • Community awareness and educational programs.

For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit . For information about internet safety education, please visit and click on the tab "resources."

This investigation was conducted the FBI and the Spokane Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Stephanie J. Lister, an Assistant United States Attorney and PSC Coordinator for the Eastern District of Washington.


Updated January 29, 2015