Breckenridge homeowner’s child pornography sentencing delayed until May
Ryan Summerlin May 8, 2014
Last week’s sentencing of a Knoxville man with ties to Breckenridge on possession of child pornography charges was rescheduled for 10 a.m. May 16 in U.S. District Court for the eastern district of Tennessee in Knoxville.
Bruce Downsbrough, a former chief executive officer of the University of Tennessee Foundation, was scheduled to appear Thursday, March 13 in U.S. district court for sentencing. He pleaded guilty in November 2013 to knowingly receiving material containing child pornography, which carries a sentence of five to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.
Downsbrough also pleaded guilty to knowingly possessing child pornography, which carries a sentence of up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. In exchange for the guilty pleas two additional charges against Downsbrough have been dropped.
The charges against Downsbrough, who owns two lots in the Valley of the Blue subdivision in Breckenridge, according to Summit County Assessor’s Office data, stem from an investigation that began in 2012. In November of that year U.S. Postal Service agent John Bowden and Knoxville Police Department investigator Tom Evans executed a search warrant of Downsbrough’s home, according to court records.
During the search, Department of Justice officials seized more than 20,000 child pornography images and movies the former UT official downloaded from the Internet or received in the mail, according to court records.
During a follow-up interview at his University of Tennessee office, Downsbrough told the investigators he had pleaded guilty in 1986 to molesting two boys in Colorado, according to Evans’ court testimony last year.
Downsbrough pleaded guilty in those two cases to sexual assault on a child and sexual assault in the third degree in Boulder District Court. The victims in both cases were young boys, according to court records.
Downsbrough was granted a two-year deferred sentence in one case, according to court records. He was sentenced to two years probation in the second.
Although Downsbrough was allowed to keep his job during the initial stages of the investigation, he was terminated from his position as University of Tennessee Foundation CEO in May 2013 when a federal grand jury returned a four-count indictment against him.
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