MADISON — A 37-year-old Holmen man was sentenced Wednesday to 10 years in federal prison for possessing child pornography.

Paul Doucet


Paul Doucet had pleaded guilty to the charge July 2. He was sentenced by Chief U.S. District Judge James Peterson in Madison.

After serving the prison sentence, Doucet faces 25 years of supervised release.

FBI agents executed a search warrant at Doucet’s home May 17 and found numerous thumb drives and a computer hard drive that were analyzed and found to contain child pornography.

Doucet had depictions of minors — including at least one younger than 12 — on various computer devices.

Doucet was sentenced in 2010 to three years in prison and another five on supervision after pleading guilty to four counts of possession child pornography. Monroe County authorities found thousands of images on computers at his Sparta home in 2008. According to court records, Doucet traded images and videos while accessing unsecured wireless networks in Melrose and West Salem neighborhoods.

According to the Wisconsin Department of Corrections, Doucet was released from prison in 2015 but returned in July for violating the terms of his release.

Doucet was subject to a 10-year mandatory minimum sentence, but Judge Peterson indicated he would impose the same sentence even if it were not required because Doucet had prior offenses involving the exploitation of children, was on supervision for his prior offenses when he committed the crime in this case, and circumvented protections that were in place as conditions of his supervision by the state Department of Corrections to keep him from accessing a computer.

Scott C. Blader, U.S. attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, said the charge against Doucet was the result of an investigation conducted by members of the Coulee Region Children’s Internet Protection Task Force and the FBI. Members of the task force include the town of Campbell, village of Holmen, city of La Crosse and town of Shelby police, and the La Crosse County Sheriff’s Department. The state Department of Corrections also assisted.

Blader said the investigation was a part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.

Led by U.S. Attorneys’ Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute people who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.

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