Former deputy gets probation in child porn case

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A former Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department deputy who pleaded no contest last month to one count of possessing child pornography received two years of formal probation, according to L.A. County court records.  

Scott Rodriguez, of Agua Dulce, was working for the Sheriff’s Department as a K-9 unit handler when, on Jan. 22, 2021, investigators accused him of using a Snapchat alias to download multiple pornographic images of children.   

In July, Rodriguez pleaded no contest to the single count against him, a plea that is treated the same as a guilty plea.  

The former deputy — who was charged by prosecutors and dismissed from the Sheriff’s Department on the same day — was charged after law enforcement received a cyber tip regarding a sworn deputy who downloaded underage pornography to his personal Snapchat account.   

Before handing the case over to Internal Investigations, Sgt. Roger Ballesteros of the LASD Internal Criminal Investigations Bureau testified that Special Victims Unit detectives reportedly conducted a warrant search, finding that the IP address associated with the image downloads was run through an encrypted WiFi signal at an Agua Dulce house, where Rodriguez and his wife, an administrative operations deputy in the department’s custody investigative service, lived with their infant child, according to court records.  

The download from which the current case stems occurred on or around July 18, 2019, and consisted of five images of children performing sexual acts.  

An iMac computer at the home was also searched, and Ballesteros said there were 59 images of nude girls on there, as well. But despite having a watermark on each image that read “TEENFUNS,” investigators could not confirm whether the girls in all of the images were of legal age.     

Both the username and email pointed investigators to an IP address on the 22000 block of Vasquez Canyon Road, where both Rodriguez and his now-ex-wife resided with their child, Ballesteros said. Rodriguez also confirmed the number “68” in the Snapchat username and email was an homage to the defendant’s high school football number.   

After comparing the couple’s work schedules against what they determined to be the exact time the images were downloaded, Ballesteros said he believed that only Rodriguez could have initiated the transfer of illegal images. 

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