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Army colonel federally indicted on child porn charges - abc27 WHTM

Army colonel federally indicted on child porn charges

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Col. Robert J. Rice (Courtesy: U.S. Army War College) Col. Robert J. Rice (Courtesy: U.S. Army War College)
Col. Robert Rice attended a preliminary hearing May 6, 2013 Col. Robert Rice attended a preliminary hearing May 6, 2013
HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) -

A federal grand jury in Harrisburg has indicted a U.S. Army colonel arrested last year for possessing child pornography.

Colonel Robert J. Rice, 56, of Carlisle, was indicted Wednesday for possession and distribution of child pornography over the Internet, according to U.S. Attorney Peter Smith.

If convicted of both crimes, Rice faces up to 30 years in prison and fines of $500,000. Possession carries up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000, while distribution carries a mandatory minimum five-year jail sentence and a fine of at least of $250,000.

The Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office conducted the initial investigation into Rice and charged him in April 2013 with 120 counts of possessing child pornography. Ten additional counts were added the following month.

During his preliminary hearing in May 2013, investigators testified that they found 10,000 images depicting children engaged in sexual acts on Rice's personal laptop computer while he was stationed at the U.S. Army War College.

Authorities said they were tipped off by Rice's then-estranged wife, who testified that she found pornography on her husband's computer and installed spyware on the laptop before she went on a trip to Florida.

She testified that after she returned home, she found child pornography and ads placed on Craigslist seeking a male sexual partner.

She said during the hearing that she confronted Rice and that he apologized.

Rice's lawyer told reporters who attended the hearing that the colonel was framed by his former wife.

Rice was a staff officer engaged in developing war games at the U.S. Army War College's Center for Strategic Leadership and Development. His clearance was suspended after his arrest.


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