The Department of Justice says a former employee at a Lake Tahoe children's ski school was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years in prison for child sexual exploitation.

27-year-old Stephan L. DeGraffenreid, of Gardnerville previously pleaded guilty to one count of sexual exploitation of a minor and two counts of attempted sexual exploitation of a minor. United States District Judge Howard D. McKibben also sentenced DeGraffenreid to lifetime supervised release.

According to the criminal complaint and plea agreement, law enforcement say they discovered child pornography on an Apple iPod Touch that was found at the Children’s Ski School at Heavenly Ski Resort. During the investigation, it was discovered the iPod belonged to DeGraffenreid who was formerly an employee at the ski school.

Officials say that during a search warrant at his residence, officers located a thumb drive containing explicit images of children in a Gardnerville day care facility restroom and DeGraffenreid admitted to downloading and possessing the child pornography.

On Jan. 26, 2017, during the execution of a search warrant at DeGraffenreid’s residence, officers with the Northern Nevada Online Child Exploitation Task Force say they located a thumb drive that contained explicit images of children in a childcare facility restroom in Gardnerville.

They say DeGraffenreid admitted to taking the sexually explicit photos of the children found on the thumb drive.

The Washoe County Sheriff's Office says that investigators have identified every victim involved and the families have been contacted. They add that the alleged crime/s were never committed at the ski resort. 

Heavenly Mountain Resort previously previously released the following statement:

"We terminated Mr. DeGraffenreid from the Heavenly Ski Resort immediately upon learning of the investigation by the authorities. We have no reason to believe that the alleged activity has any connection to Heavenly Ski Resort or its guests. The alleged activity is abhorrent to everything that our resort stands for and we remain available to cooperate with the authorities in their investigation, if requested."