Ranzenberger admits sexual abuse of minor, pleads guilty to child porn possession


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Former fixed-term faculty member Mark T. Ranzenberger

Former Central Michigan University faculty member Mark Ranzenberger admitted Sept. 27 in U.S. District Court that he sexually abused a minor from 1995 until 2002. Michigan State Police confirmed they are assisting the United States Secret Service with an additional investigation surrounding Ranzenberger.  

The former journalism and broadcasting instructor was in court to plead guilty to one count of possession of child pornography. 

Federal Prosecutor Anca Pop read the details of the plea agreement. In pleading guilty, Ranzenberger admitted to possessing child pornography and storing it on various devices found by police in March. He also admitted to sexually abusing a minor between beginning in 1995 as often as three times a week until 2002. 

The U.S. Secret Service directed the victim to the Mount Pleasant Post and Troopers completed their investigation with the victim’s assistance. Michigan State Police completed its investigation and turned over investigative materials to the Secret Service investigators.

After Pop read the plea agreement, Ranzenberger’s lawyer, Jeffrey Rupp, read the facts and asked Ranzenberger to confirm them. The only detail he took issue with was the number of images found. Ranzenberger said he was surprised the number was more than 1,000, but did not deny the fact.

The plea agreement sets the sentencing guideline between 11 and 14 years. After his sentence, Ranzenberger will be required to register as a sex offender. Ranzenberger will be sentenced by Judge Thomas Luddington. His sentencing date has not been set. 

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