A Douglass (Mont.) man already serving time in federal prison for possessing child porn has been convicted of new charges he raped a 13-month-old girl.
Robert Laverne Knappenberger, 42, formerly of the first block of Sweinhart Road, was convicted in Montgomery County Court on Wednesday of charges of rape of a child and involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child in connection with incidents that occurred in 2011. Judge William R. Carpenter issued the verdict after a one-day stipulated non-jury trial.
The judge deferred sentencing so that court officials can complete a background investigative report about Knappenberger. Knappenberger was returned to federal prison where he is currently serving a 35 year sentence after he previously pleaded guilty to charges of producing and disseminating child pornography.
Knappenberger faces a possible maximum sentence of 20-to-40-years in prison for the latest conviction.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Samantha Cauffman. Knappenberger was represented by defense lawyer Denise Marone.
According to the most recent arrest affidavit filed by Douglass (Mont.) Detective Robert Evans and county detective Dirk Boughter, police were notified by federal agents in April 2011 of a child pornography investigation involving Knappenberger. Undercover federal agents had been conversing with Knappenberger on the Internet regarding the exchange of child pornography and Knappenberger agreed to exchange videos from his home address.
On April 7, 2011, federal officials, with assistance from other agencies, obtained a warrant to search Knappenberger’s residence and seized several items, including computers and a digital camera, according to court records.
Knappenberger, according to court documents, also provided a statement to investigators admitting to having committed “several sexual acts” with the infant victim while she was in his company at various times. Knappenberger also admitted he “took pictures of the progressions of (the sexual acts) for distribution to online contacts with an affinity for this type of child pornography,” according to the criminal complaint.
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