Courtland man sentenced for criminal sexual conduct

NICOLLET COUNTY — A 38-year-old Courtland man that used two young children in sexual performances or pornography and shared sexually explicit photos of them online was sentenced to 70 months in the St. Cloud Correctional Facility in Nicollet County District Court Monday.

Phillip M. Reinhart, 505 Main St., pleaded guilty to 2nd-degree criminal sexual conduct-significant relationship with victim under age 16. Six other felony 1st and 2nd degree criminal sexual conduct charges, four using minors in sexual performance/pornographic work, three dissemination of porn and three possessing porn charges plus two gross misdemeanor child endangerment charges were dismissed.

Reinhart was fined $580, which may be taken from his prison earnings. He is required to register as a predatory offender and restitution is reserved.

The sentence is concurrent with a sentence imposed on a federal case in which he was sentenced to 40 years in prison in U.S. District Court in St. Paul. He was sentenced to 20 years of supervised release. Reinhart pleaded guilty to one count each of production and attempted production of child pornography in January.

According to court documents and Reinhart’s plea, from May 2017 to March 2018, he created and attempted to create sexually explicit images of two minors, ages seven and nine whom he knew at the time. Images of minors in various states of undress and a pornographic video were sent to an undercover FBI agent on Kik Messenger.

Reinhart was identified after the FBI tracked the sender’s IP address to him. In his home, police seized a computer, cell phones and other evidence.

In an interview with an FBI agent and a Nicollet County sheriff’s investigator, Reinhart admitted to abusing the children and sending photos of them to a number of people.

One of the children told investigators she was the victim of abuse over a period of time.

The case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood designed to fight the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation across the country.

Fritz Busch can be emailed at fbusch@nujournal.com.