Vermont Man Sentenced For Distribution And Possession Of Child Pornography
The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that Hilary Denault-Reynolds, 53, formerly of St. Albans, Vermont, was sentenced on October 22, 2018, in United States District Court in Rutland, Vermont, to serve seven years in prison after his guilty plea to one count each of distribution of child pornography and possession of child pornography. Chief U.S. District Judge Geoffrey W. Crawford also ordered Denault-Reynolds to serve a fifteen year term of supervised release upon his release from prison.
According to court records and proceedings, in spring of 2016, internet service providers Yahoo and Chatstep transmitted “Cybertips” to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) that a user, later identified as Denault-Reynolds, had transmitted images of child pornography over their online platforms. NCMEC forwarded the tips to the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (the ICAC). The ICAC investigated the tips and obtained warrants to search Denault-Reynolds’ Yahoo account and ultimately his residence in St. Albans, Vermont. On November 17, 2016, law enforcement executed the residential search warrant and seized multiple computers and electronic storage devices from Denault-Reynolds. Forensic examination of the computers and devices revealed that they contained thousands of images and videos of child pornography, and that Denault-Reynolds distributed child pornography to others using Yahoo Messenger. Subsequent investigation revealed that Denault-Reynolds had also bragged online about his sexual abuse of children earlier in his life, and that he had spent years “grooming” a child who lived near him.
The government was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicole P. Cate. Denault-Reynolds was represented by Assistant Federal Public Defender David L. McColgin.
United States Attorney Christina E. Nolan commended the efforts of the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and Homeland Security Investigations in the investigation and prosecution of Denault-Reynolds.
U.S. Attorney Nolan noted that this prosecution is part of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative designed to protect children from online exploitation and abuse. Led by the U.S. Attorney’s 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 www.projectsafechildhood.gov.