Leonard C Boyle, Acting United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, today announced that a federal grand jury in Hartford has returned an indictment charging CHRISTOPHER MICHAELSON, 37, of Guilford, with receipt of child pornography.
The indictment was returned on November 3. Michaelson appeared today via videoconference before U.S. Magistrate Judge S. Dave Vatti and pleaded not guilty to the charge.
As alleged in court documents and statements made in court, on January 9, 2019, the Guilford Police Department assisted Burrillville (R.I.) Police with the arrest of Michaelson at his residence in Guilford on Rhode Island state charges for child molestation, solicitation and enticement. During the arrest, officers seized Michaelson’s cellphone. A court-authorized search of the seized phone revealed hundreds of images and videos depicting the sexual abuse of children, primarily boys between the ages of five and 15.
Michaelson has been detained since his arrest.
The charge of receipt of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years and a maximum term of imprisonment of 20 years.
Acting U.S. Attorney Boyle stressed that an indictment is not evidence of guilt. Charges are only allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
This matter is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office, the Guilford Police Department and the Burrillville Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Stephanie T. Levick and Maria del Pilar Gonzalez.
This prosecution is part of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Childhood Initiative, which is aimed at protecting children from sexual abuse and exploitation. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.