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Former Judith Gap School teacher sentenced for child pornography

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Posted at 11:13 AM, Jan 13, 2023

GREAT FALLS — Jayson Gayo of Harlowton, a 28-year old former Judith Gap School teacher who admitted to possessing child pornography after Facebook submitted a tip to authorities, was sentenced in federal court in Billings on Friday, January 13, 2023.

Gayo pleaded guilty in August 2022 to possession of child pornography as charged in an indictment.

The government alleged that in August 2020, Facebook submitted a number of Cybertips indicating that child pornography was likely being transmitted from an account associated with Gayo, who was a teacher at Judith Gap School at the time. There was no indication that the images or Gayo’s conduct involved students at the school.

An investigation led to the execution of a search warrant of Gayo’s residence, where law enforcement collected numerous electronic media items. A separate warrant was served on Facebook concerning Gayo’s account.

Evidence collected included a video which depicted a child and an adult engaged in a sexual act and evidence that the video was uploaded to an internet chatroom by Gayo. There are no allegations that Mr. Gayo was a participant in the sexual acts depicted or the video’s creation.

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Investigators determined that Gayo’s media contained 209 images and 146 videos of child pornography. The videos showed children as young as that of a toddler being sexually abused by adults. The government further alleged that Gayo not only possessed child pornography but also was an administrator of a group involving those with an interest in pornography.

U.S. District Judge Susan Watters sentenced Gayo to 78 months (6.5 years) in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said in a news release. Watters also ordered Gayo to pay $3,000 restitution.


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