Wednesday, February 13, 2008
A,B,C,D,E,F Follow me a Former Teacher sentenced to more than 20 years in prison on child pornography charges.
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma - John C. Richter, United States Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma, announced today that MARK D. RICE, 50, of Oklahoma City, has been sentenced to 262 months in prison for producing and possessing child pornography.
During 2001, Mr. Rice was employed as a teacher at ASTEC, a charter school in Oklahoma City. In November of that year, the Oklahoma City Police Department arrested Mr. Rice based on complaints from the school relating to child pornography and recovered numerous images of child pornography at his residence. He has been incarcerated since December 6, 2001, primarily at the Oklahoma County Jail.
Mr. Rice pled guilty to four child-pornography felonies on May 6, 2002. These crimes included taking pornographic photographs of a very young child at his apartment in Oklahoma City, transporting across state lines a videotape that he made of himself engaging in sexual conduct in the presence of child when he worked as a teacher in Mississippi, and possessing compact discs containing images of child pornography. On December 4, 2002, he was sentenced to 262 months in prison for those offenses.
After this first sentence was imposed, Mr. Rice appealed unsuccessfully the legality of the search of his apartment. The case was remanded for re-sentencing, however, because of intervening changes in federal sentencing law handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court. On May 26, 2006, Mr. Rice asked the district court in Oklahoma City for permission to withdraw his guilty pleas. After hearing two full days of evidence in August of 2007, the district court denied that motion. Today the court imposed the same sentence as it did more than five years ago: 262 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. In imposing this sentence, the court concluded that a sentence above that recommended by the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines was appropriate.
In responding to the decision today, United States Attorney John C. Richter stated: "Child exploitation destroys innocent lives. In reflection of that reality, the Court today again concluded that Mr. Rice is an unrepentant child predator and imposed a very lengthy sentence. I hope that this sentence will serve as a strong message to those who are thinking about doing this to another child."
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Oklahoma City Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys David L. Walling, Scott E. Williams, and Randal A. Sengel