The United States Attorney’s Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings on May 9, 2012 before Senior U.S. District Judge Jack D. Shanstrom, Jason Dean Pitsch, a 41-year-old resident of Garyowen, appeared for sentencing. Pitsch was sentenced to a term of:
■Prison: 120 months
■Special assessment: $100
■Supervised release: lifetime
Pitsch was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to viewing child pornography.
In an offer of proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
Beginning in October 2010, law enforcement in Billings observed a computer IP address that had multiple movies of child pornography available to share via peer-to-peer file sharing software. Further investigation revealed that the IP address was associated with an address in Garryowen of an individual with whom Pitsch resided. A search warrant was served in May of 2011.
Pitsch was questioned and admitted that he had used his computer to view child pornography via peer-to-peer file sharing programs. A forensic analysis found approximately 310 images of child pornography in unallocated space on Pitsch’s computer, including children under the age of 12 and of sadistic and masochistic conduct. Pitsch has two prior federal child pornography convictions.
Because there is no parole in the federal system, the “truth in sentencing” guidelines mandate that Pitsch will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, Pitsch does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for “good behavior.” However, this reduction will not exceed 15 percent of the overall sentence.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Billings Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Montana Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.