In December 2015, the Los Angeles Police Department's Internet Crimes Against Children task force received a tip that actor Mark Salling was housing a collection of child pornography in his home in Sunland, California.
After a raid and further investigation, authorities discovered that he was in possession of more than 54,000 photos and videos which he downloaded using a software to mask his IP address. The 35-year-old, who played Noah "Puck" Puckerman on the hit show Glee, was immediately arrested, but later freed on a $20,000 bail.
Nearly a year after being charged with possession of child pornography, the disgraced actor has pleaded guilty and entered a plea agreement on Tuesday.
According to Deadline, Salling said that he is "pleading guilty because I am guilty of the charges."
The actor avoided a longer sentence of at least 20 years and a lifetime of supervised parole due to his guilty plea. He agreed to serve four to seven years in prison as well as register as a sex offender. He is not allowed to have any form of communication with anyone under the age of 18 unless the minor's parent or legal guardian is present.
The deal, which must still be signed by a federal judge, also entails that he will spend 20 years under supervised release, meaning his internet usage will be monitored. Once he is out of prison, he must attend mandatory counselling and stay 100 feet away from areas highly frequented by children, such as schools, swimming pools, playgrounds, etc.
Salling has also been ordered to pay about $50,000 in restitution to some of the victims who pressed charges.
This isn't the first time that Salling had a run in with the law. In 2011, an ex-girlfriend, Roxanne Gorzela, sued him for sexual battery, and in March 2015 he allegedly reached a $2.7 million settlement with her.
Not many people close to the actor have commented on his situation, but in 2016 his ex-girlfriend and former Glee co-star Naya Riviera wrote in her memoir, Sorry Not Sorry, that she was not "totally shocked" by the charges.
"But still — WTF? Then I had no doubt that God really did have my back along the way," she added.
What do you think of Salling's sentence?