Over two years after Glee ended, core cast member Mark Salling has struck a deal with the feds that will see him serving possibly nearly a decade behind bars and 20 years of supervised release on child pornography charges.
Stating that he is “pleading guilty because I am guilty of the charges” and accepting “48-84 months of imprisonment,” Salling this week escaped spending up to 20 years in jail and a lifetime of supervised release over the charges that stemmed from his December 29, 2015 arrest. On May 31, 2016, the actor was indicted on two counts for receiving and possessing child pornography on his laptop computer and a flash memory drive.
“Defendant knowingly possessed matters which the defendant knew contained visual depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct,” states the 20-page October 3 deal signed by Salling, Deputy Assistant U.S. Attorney Joey Lynn Blanch and the actor’s lawyers Michael Broctok and Kimberly Singer (read it here).
Although it still needs formal approval by Judge Otis Wright II, the plea agreement with the Acting U.S. Attorney that was filed Tuesday in California also will see Salling having to register as a sex offender when he gets out of jail. Upon sentencing, he also will pay $50,000 to each victim who has requested it.
Additionally, the actor who played one-time football bully Noah “Puck” Puckerman on the six-season Fox show will have to “participate” in a treatment program and stay away from venues frequented by minors such as schools and “video arcade facilities.” Also, any computers or related digital devices that Salling uses will be subject at any time to “search and seizure.” The only exception is those used by employers of the actor.
In that vein, Salling quickly was dropped from Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets last year after his indictment.