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Ex-Tahoe ski teacher pleads guilty to child sexual exploitation

Updated September 5, 2017 - 6:54 pm

A former Lake Tahoe children’s ski instructor pleaded guilty Tuesday to sexual exploitation of a minor.

Stephan DeGraffenreid, 26, faces a minimum of 15 years in federal prison for each of three charges: one count of sexual exploitation of a minor and two counts of attempted sexual exploitation of a minor, according to court documents.

U.S. District Judge Howard D. McKibben scheduled DeGraffenreid’s sentencing for Nov. 29 in Reno.

Prosecutors have said the Northern Nevada man photographed children as young as 3 in a bathroom at a rural day care center his mother manages inside a church.

DeGraffenreid was fired from his job as an assistant at the Heavenly Ski Resort’s ski school after his March 30 arrest. At DeGraffenreid’s home, investigators found a thumb drive that contained images of at least three preschool age girls taken inside the bathroom of a child care facility in Gardnerville, according to a plea agreement.

Defense lawyer David Houston could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

A criminal complaint claims DeGraffenreid’s cellphone found on the slopes at the Heavenly ski resort was filled with nude photos of prepubescent girls he apparently downloaded from the internet.

Contact David Ferrara at dferrara@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-1039. Follow @randompoker on Twitter.

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