A Maryland man accused of video-recording his sexual assaults of three girls ages 2 to 4 was convicted in federal court Thursday on 18 counts of producing child pornography.
Kyle Thompson, 33, a former commercial HVAC technician, faces a possible sentence of more than 200 years in prison. The jury deliberated less than 30 minutes in a case that longtime child-abuse investigators had called among the most disturbing they’d seen.
Thompson “engaged in sexually explicit conduct” with the three girls from May 2015 to January 2017 to produce the pornography, according to federal officials.
“We are grateful that the jury, who had to hear the details of Thompson’s horrendous conduct, held him accountable and swiftly found him guilty,” said Robert K. Hur, the U.S. Attorney for Maryland.
Court records show that on March 16, 2017, an acquaintance of Thompson tipped off investigators to the abuse and videos. At the time, Thompson was living in a townhouse community in Burtonsville in Montgomery County, where he was known as a quiet neighbor.
The accusations were stark. Thompson knew the girls’ mothers and gained the women’s trust to be alone with the girls long enough to assault them — in his home and in the woods behind it, according to court filings.
Investigators raided the residence on March 17, 2017, and found a Secure Digital (SD) memory card hidden in Thompson’s laundry room, according to state and federal officials. The SD card held 18 videos of his sexually abusing the young girls, officials said.
In one video, according to an affidavit filed last year by Montgomery County detectives, Thompson could be seen sexually assaulting a girl who was tied on his bed with a belt and crying for her mother.
“Your mommy can’t save you,” Thompson could be heard saying, according to court records.
Detectives and prosecutors in Montgomery County lodged 78 charges against Thompson related to sexual assaults. “The allegations,” Montgomery Assistant State’s Attorney Danielle Sartwell said at the time, “are, quite frankly, just horrific.”
Also in the spring of 2017, the U.S. attorney’s office in Maryland secured an indictment charging Thompson with 18 counts of producing child pornography. Those charges led to the conviction Thursday.
“This is a tragic case for the little girls who were sexually abused,” Hur said.
None of the victims had to testify in federal court — voiding a concern that had been raised by the need to have the children testify in open court in any county case that went to trial in state court. In the federal case, their mothers testified to establish the girls’ identities in the images recorded by Thompson.
Sentencing in the case is set for Jan. 28 before U.S. District Judge Theodore D. Chuang in Greenbelt.
Thompson still faces a possible trial in Montgomery County on the 78 counts, starting Oct. 9. It wasn’t immediately clear what effect Thursday’s conviction would have on the pending trial.
Thompson’s attorneys, Isabelle Raquin and Steve Mercer, declined to comment Thursday, citing Thompson’s pending prosecution in Montgomery County.