Ex-police sergeant sentenced to 5 years in child porn case

Richard Woodhead enters court for sentencing on child pornography charges.

ATTLEBORO, Mass. (WPRI) — A former sergeant with the Attleboro Police Department was sentenced Friday to 60 months in prison after pleading guilty to a child pornography charge.

During his sentencing, a tearful Richard Woodhead – who could have faced up to 20 years in prison -apologized for his crime.

“I offer no excuses for my behavior. I will not re-offend in the future,” he said.

Following his sentence, he asked to turn himself in at a later date. The request was denied and Woodhead was remanded into custody.

Woodhead, 55, was arrested in April after talking to an undercover police officer about sexual relations with minors. Investigators said they later found in his home a secret compartment containing child pornography.

Woodhead reached a plea deal with prosecutors and in August pleaded guilty to a single count of attempted receipt of child pornography.

Following Friday’s sentencing, Woodhead’s lawyers issued the following statement:

“Richard Woodhead is a loving father, family and friend. He had a decorated career as a police officer where he spent more than 30 years protecting the Attleboro community. His recent charge in federal court is the product of a late, onset mental illness. Mr. Woodhead is not a sexual predator and there is no evidence of any kind to even suggest he has victimized children. According to his mental health provider, Mr. Woodhead poses no risk to the community or others and his condition is very treatable. He hopes to be remembered for his decades of public service and community contributions, opposed to this recent, isolated aberration from his true character.”

-John L. Calcagni III, Esq.
-John E. MacDonald, Esq.

His lawyers Thursday submitted more than a dozen letters from Woodhead’s family and friends asking the judge for a lenient sentence.

Included among the letters was one from a psychologist who said that Woodhead is a sex addict, but not a pedophile, stating: “Richard is not a danger to children or minors.”

Send tips to Target 12 Investigator Walt Buteau at wbuteau@wpri.com and follow him on Twitter @wbuteau