Madras man pleads guilty to possessing child pornography
A Madras man with no prior criminal history, Timothy Eugene Schnell, 58, pleaded no contest April 4, to three counts of second-degree encouraging child sexual abuse.
Through a tip from the Oregon Department of Justice Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, investigators learned that Schnell had uploaded a pornographic image of a child to his Microsoft OneNote account
Armed with search warrants, investigators were able to review the contents of the account, along with Schnell's cell phone and computer, which led to the discovery of a total of 12 images. Investigation revealed that Schnell possessed the images, but did not create the images himself, or share them with other individuals.
Immediately after Schnell entered his plea to the three Class C felonies, Circuit Court Judge Daniel Ahern sentenced him to 60 days in the Jefferson County Correctional Facility and two years of supervised probation. Schnell will be required to register as a sex offender.
Prior to sentencing, Brentley Foster, Jefferson County's chief deputy district attorney, explained that Schnell had placed the photos into a separate file on his computer, "so there was no chance that his possession was somehow accidental."
She asked the court to impose a 60-day sentence, as established by Oregon's Criminal Sentencing guidelines, which also specify that he must undergo sex offender treatment, have no internet access without the approval of his probation officer, have no contact with minors, and possess no pornography throughout his probation.
Foster played a recorded jail call in which Schnell complained about being in jail for a "victimless crime." She pointed out that the images he possessed were real images of children "being victimized in the worst way possible," and that his actions were "undeniably criminal in nature."
Schnell, represented by Jason Munn, apologized to the court for the statement.
Ahern admonished Schnell about the seriousness of his actions and sentenced him under the state's guidelines.
The Jefferson County District Attorney's Office praised the DOJ's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, the MPD, and Oregon State Police for their work in the investigation.