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Press Release

Whitingham Man Sentenced for Child Exploitation Offense

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

Burlington, Vermont – The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that on January 3, 2024, Carl Butterfield, 54, of Whitingham, Vermont, was sentenced in United States District Court in Rutland, Vermont, to serve 135 months in prison after his guilty plea to one count of possession of child pornography (also known as child sexual abuse material, or CSAM). Chief U.S. District Judge Geoffrey W. Crawford also ordered Butterfield to serve a 15-year term of supervised release.

According to court records and proceedings, on September 30, 2021, knowing what it depicted, Butterfield possessed a video that showed an adult male sexually assaulting a prepubescent female. Butterfield broke the video into four separate video files so he could send it to a person with whom he was chatting on the social media platform Kik, which he did. At the time, Butterfield was on furlough with the State of Vermont following his 2007 conviction for possession of CSAM.

In sentencing Butterfield, Judge Crawford noted that Butterfield’s prior conviction for possession of CSAM required the Court to sentence Butterfield to a term of imprisonment of at least 10 years. Judge Crawford also enhanced Butterfield’s sentence for obstruction of justice because Butterfield intentionally destroyed an iPhone that he used to access CSAM before it could be reviewed by his state probation officer.

United States Attorney Nikolas P. Kerest commended the efforts of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Vermont Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, in the investigation and prosecution of Butterfield.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Barbara A. Masterson handled the prosecution of Butterfield. Assistant Federal Public Defender Sara M. Puls represented Butterfield.

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 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and Child Exploitation Obscenity Section, Criminal Division (CEOS), 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 to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit


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Updated January 8, 2024

Project Safe Childhood