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Press Release

Former Girard, PA Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Producing Sexually Explicit Photos of Young Children

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

ERIE, Pa. - A former resident of Girard, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced in federal court to 15 years in prison, lifetime supervised release and a $5,300 special assessment on his conviction of violating federal laws relating to the sexual exploitation of children, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.

United States District Judge David S. Cercone imposed the sentence on Michael Robert Heinrich, 68.

According to information presented to the court, in January 2017 Heinrich took sexually explicit photos of a minor who was four years of age at the time. On February 14, 2017, Heinrich again took sexually explicit photos of that same four-year-old minor and also took a sexually explicit photo of a three-year-old minor. An examination of Heinrich’s computers and cell phone also revealed the presence of numerous other images depicting prepubescent minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

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 (CEOS), 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

Assistant United States Attorney Christian A. Trabold prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

United States Attorney Brady commended the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Pennsylvania State Police for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Heinrich.

Updated August 12, 2019

Project Safe Childhood