Lowell Man Charged Federally For Producing Child Pornography
GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – A federal grand jury returned a nine-count indictment Thursday charging a West Michigan man with producing and possessing child pornography. The indictment alleges that Travis Stiehl, 22, produced sexually explicit photographs and videos of children as young as two years old on eight different occasions from September 2011 to August 2013. The indictment also charges Stiehl with possession of approximately 2,000 images of child pornography on a hard drive.
Stiehl was arrested April 25, 2014, at his mother’s residence in Lowell, which had previously operated as a daycare facility. He has been in custody since that time. The eight production counts each carry a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison and a maximum of 30 years. The possession count carries a maximum sentence of 20 years.
The charges are the result of an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Michigan State Police Internet Crimes Against Children. Assistant U.S. Attorney Tessa K. Hessmiller is the prosecutor on the case.
HSI requests that anyone who believes his or her child may have been a victim contact HSI at 616-235-3936, extension 2215.
The charges in an indictment are merely accusations, and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law.