Mark Salling: Glee actor formally charged in child pornography case
A federal grand jury has indicted actor Mark Salling on charges of receiving and possessing child pornography on his laptop computer and a flash memory drive, the Department of Justice announced in a press release.
The former Glee star, 33, was named in a two count indictment alleging he received videos and still images of child pornography involving young girls in December 2015, the release states.
The laptop, a hard drive, and a USB flash drive seized from Salling’s residence allegedly contained thousands of images and videos depicting child pornography, according to investigators, who are continuing to review the material, the release states.
Salling, through his attorney, has allegedly agreed to surrender to federal authorities on June 3 to face the charges in the indictment, according to the release. He is expected to be arraigned on the indictment on that date, the release states.
Salling was best known as Noah “Puck” Puckerman on Ryan Murphy’s musical series, which ran on Fox from 2009-15.
“It doesn’t matter who you are or what you do, if you hurt a child you will be held accountable,” said Lt. Andrea Grossman, Commander of the LAPD Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. “These images are more than photographs, they are child abuse.”
Salling was taken into custody last Dec. 29 after the Los Angeles Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children unit obtained a search warrant for his home in Sunland, California.
Salling’s past is not without incident: Back in January 2013, he was sued by an ex-girlfriend for sexual battery, assault, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligence. The woman, Roxanne Gorzela, alleged that Salling pushed her to the ground during an argument after forcing her to have sex without a condom. Gorzela eventually dropped the sexual battery claim, and Salling agreed to pay her about $2.7 million.
In December, a close friend of Salling told PEOPLE, “This isn’t the guy I know at all,” He added, “I have to believe his computer was hacked.”
According to the release, receiving child pornography carries a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison and a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years. Possessing child pornography also carries a statutory maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.