A federal judge sentenced a former Opelousas child psychiatrist to 15 years in prison for possessing and receiving child pornography.
United States Attorney Stephanie A. Finley announced this week that Gary Jefferson Byrd, 72, received that sentence from U.S. District Judge Elizabeth E. Foote.
He also has been ordered to undergo 10 years of supervised probation after he completes his sentence.
Finley said this week’s sentencing followed a two-day trial in October.
“Witness testimony and documents admitted into evidence established that from February 2008 to April 2011, Byrd ordered 44 compact discs containing videos of child pornography from a Canadian company,” Finley said in a press release.
“United States Postal Inspectors executed a search warrant on Byrd’s home and found stacks of compact discs containing tens of thousands of images of child pornography that Byrd had downloaded from the internet. Byrd had also printed hundreds of images of child pornography that he kept in files in his bedroom,” Finley said.
She said the U.S. Postal Service Investigations conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney John Luke Walker prosecuted the case.
This is Byrd’s second conviction on similar charges. In 1992, a federal jury convicted Byrd of possessing child pornography. He served 10 years in prison for that conviction.
Before the 1992 conviction, he worked as a child psychiatrist.
“This case is part of Project Safe Childhood, a U.S. Department of Justice launched nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse,” Finley said.
Led by U.S. Attorneys’ offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.