JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Dennis William Sheffield, Jr., 52, was sentenced to 16 years and 3 months in federal prison for receipt of child sex abuse materials.
According to the Department of Justice, Sheffield was also ordered to serve a life term of supervised release and to register as a sex offender. In addition, he was ordered to pay $15,000 in restitution to victims of his offenses. Sheffield had pleaded guilty on December 16, 2022.
According to the plea agreement, in February 2022, Homeland Security Investigations began investigating Sheffield in response to a CyberTip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The CyberTip indicated that child sex abuse material had been uploaded to a search engine. An IP address for the individual who had uploaded the materials was traced to Sheffield and law enforcement learned that Sheffield was listed as a predator on the Florida Department of Law Enforcement’s Sexual Offenders and Predators registry because of two convictions in 1996 of attempted sexual battery on a child under 12 years old.
On March 3, 2022, based on the CyberTip and identification of Sheffield as the subject, law enforcement obtained a federal search warrant for Sheffield’s residence. The following day, authorities executed the search warrant and encountered Sheffield, who was holding a phone in his hand. A preliminary examination of the cellphone revealed multiple files of child sex abuse materials on the phone.
Sheffield admitted to having a problem and that he liked looking at child sex abuse images, which he admitted to having viewed as recently as a couple of days earlier. Sheffield also admitted to saving some of the images on his phone.
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