BLOUNTSTOWN – An Altha man was sentenced to 80 years in prison Wednesday after being found guilty as charged of 15 counts of Possession of Child Pornography, State Attorney Larry Basford announced.
A jury took less than an hour of deliberation to return its verdict against Benjamin Scott Donaldson, 42, following a two-day trial. Circuit Court Judge Brandon Young then sentenced the defendant to 15 years in prison on Count 1, and 5 years each on the remaining 14 counts to be served consecutively, for a total of 80 years.
Judge Young also designated the defendant as a Sexual Offender.
Chief Calhoun County Prosecutor William Wright successfully argued that the court should allow testimony from a woman who was a young teen when Donaldson victimized her in a 2014 case. She was one of 5 witnesses called by the state.
The investigation began in 2021 when the Florida Department of Law Enforcement received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC). After a thorough investigation by the FDLE with assistance from the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office, evidence showed the defendant used his cell phone at work and at home to download illegal images of child pornography, including images of young girls being sexually battered.
The trial began Monday with jury selection, and concluded Wednesday.
Basford thanked Wright and the staff at the SAO’s Blountstown office, along with the FDLE and CCSO for their diligent work on the case.
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