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Press Release

Spencer Man Sentenced for Child Pornography Charges

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

BOSTON – A Spencer man was sentenced yesterday in federal court in Worcester for possessing child sexual abuse material (CSAM).    

Joseph Michael Smith, 60, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Mark G. Mastroianni to 27 months in prison and five years of supervised release. In November 2022, Smith pleaded guilty to one count of possession of child pornography. 

Investigators received several tips that CSAM was shared from messenger accounts tied to Smith’s address. During a search of Smith’s residence on Nov. 10, 2021, a drive was seized, and a forensic analysis revealed 35 videos depicting children as young as two-years-old being sexually abused, as well as over 300 images depicting CSAM that had downloaded to, and deleted from, the USB drive. 

United States Attorney Rachael S. Rollins; Matthew B. Millhollin, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in New England; and Spencer Police Chief David Darrin made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kristen Noto of Rollins’ Worcester Branch Office prosecuted the case.  

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse, launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and the DOJ’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who exploit children, as well as identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated March 2, 2023

Project Safe Childhood