Son of Butler Co. judge receives no prison time after pleading guilty to child porn

Son of Butler Co. judge receives no prison time after pleading guilty to child porn

BUTLER CO., Pa. — The son of Butler County’s top judge pleaded guilty to child pornography, but the sentence he received sparked outrage from the community.

John Paul Doerr III, 34, was sentenced to five years probation, six months house arrest and 15 years on the Megan’s Law registry after pleading guilty to 35 counts of child pornography -- which could have landed him a maximum sentence of more than 250 years in prison.

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Doerr’s father is Thomas Doerr, Butler County’s president judge. Dozens of people protested Doerr’s sentencing outside the Butler County Courthouse on Friday, saying they believe that father-son relationship had a lot to do with the lenient sentence.

“It’s not fair. He (could have) gotten 252 years behind bars, (but) instead he got probation and house arrest,” said Madison Morgan, a demonstrator. “It’s because of who his father is.”

Doerr was initially arrested after confessing that he downloaded multiple videos, including one with a child as young as 1-2 years old. Investigators tracked him down using the IP address assigned to his computer.

Butler County officials told Channel 11 there was no wrongdoing in the case. The district attorney said he immediately handed Doerr’s case over to the attorney general’s office and that no local judge heard the case.

Authorities brought in an outside judge and prosecutor. That prosecutor said this is a standard sentence, typical for these types of cases.

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