'Glee' Star Arrested for Child Pornography

On Tuesday December 29, 2015 the LAPD’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit obtained a search warrant for Mark Salling’s (“Puck”, from the TV show, Glee) home in Sunland, California. Upon entering, police found hundreds of pictures of child pornography on Salling’s computer. Salling was arrested and later bonded out by his family.

Per Section 311.11 of the California Penal Code, a person who possesses any images that depict minors who are engaging in or simulating “sexual conduct”** (and the person in possession of this material knows that the images depict minors), that person is guilty of possessing obscene material or child pornography. Punishment may include imprisonment for up to one year and a fine of up to $2,500. In this situation, Salling allegedly possessed over 1,000 images; some of the images have been reported to contain girls under the age of 10 years old.

Because of the quantity of pictures and the age of the minors depicted, Section 311.11(c)(1) will apply. Under Section 311.11(c)(1) if more than 600 images are found, and 10 or more of the images involved a minor under 12-years-old, the punishment can be increased to up to five years imprisonment.

If Salling is charged with distributing child pornography (i.e., sharing the files with others) punishment ranges are even higher. Any conviction will result in Salling having to register as a sex offender.

Chad West and Jonathan Michell have handled numerous cases in Federal and State courts involving possession and distribution of child pornography. These cases are sad for a variety of reasons. Obviously, the offenses perpetuate ongoing abuse towards children who cannot defend or protect themselves. Less obvious is the trauma and harm that often impact the defendant’s family. These cases almost always tear families apart and send otherwise stable families into chaos, as many defendants are first-time offenders who have never been in trouble with the law, or like Salling, the alleged offenders are seemingly upstanding citizens.

At Chad West, PLLC, we handle these cases with the upmost care and confidentiality. Please contact us if you or a loved one need a confidential consultation.    

**Sexual conduct is defined under the California Penal Code Section 311.4(d) as any of the following whether actual or simulated: sexual intercourse, oral copulation, anal intercourse, anal oral copulation, masturbation, bestiality, sexual sadism, sexual masochism, penetration of the vagina or rectum by any object in a lewd or lascivious manner, exhibition of the genitals or pubic or rectal area for the purposes of sexual stimulation of the viewer, any lewd or lascivious sexual act, or excretory functions performed in a lewd or lascivious manner, whether or not any of the above conduct is performed alone or between members of the same or opposite sex or between humans and animals. An act is simulated when it gives the appearance of being sexual conduct.


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