L.A. County Firefighter Convicted of Downloading Child Porn at Work to Serve Probation, Community Service

A Los Angeles County firefighter who pleaded no contest Friday to possessing child pornography is expected to serve five years of probation and 60 days of community service as part of a plea deal, prosecutors said.

Matthew David Winters was given a suspended sentence of 16 months in state prison, which essentially means he will not be required to serve that time unless he violates other terms of the deal with prosecutors, according to Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokesman Paul Eakins.

“It’s the sentence he got but it doesn’t mean he has to serve the sentence,” Eakins said.

Winters, 51, began downloading child porn at a fire station in El Monte in December 2017, and continued to do so until May 2018, prosecutors have said.

He will have to register for life as a sex offender and attend one year of sex offender treatment, in addition to completing the roughly five months’ worth of community labor and years of probation, according to prosecutors.

The convicted firefighter cannot have any unsupervised contact with minors except for family members and will be subject to search and seizure conditions, the DA’s office said. He is also prohibited from possessing any form of pornography.

A progress report on Winters’ completion of these terms is scheduled for March 6 at the Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center in downtown L.A.

Winters was convicted of one felony count of possession of child porn as part of the plea deal, prosecutors said.

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