Former Teacher Pleads Guilty to Child Pornography
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A former Lebanon, Mo., teacher pleaded guilty in federal court today to receiving and distributing child pornography over the Internet.
Brandon Hileman, 25, of Lebanon, Mo., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to the charge contained in an Oct. 18, 2017, federal indictment.
Hileman, formerly a math teacher at Joel E. Barber Junior High School in Lebanon, admitted that he received and distributed child pornography over the internet between Jan. 1 and Sept. 29, 2017.
The investigation began when a Lebanon police detective was notified that Hileman had uploaded two videos of child pornography to his Google Drive account. Law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at Hileman’s residence on Sept. 29, 2017, and seized computers, an iPad, cell phones and digital storage devices. Investigators examined the devices and found images and videos of child pornography.
Under federal statutes, Hileman is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 20 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney James J. Kelleher. It was investigated by Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Lebanon, Mo., Police Department.
Project Safe Childhood
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the 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. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc . For more information about Internet safety education, please visit www.usdoj.gov/psc and click on the tab "resources."