LOGAN — A 39-year-old Logan man has been sentenced to prison for downloading and taking pornographic pictures of local children.
William L. Larson appeared in 1st District Court Wednesday afternoon for an evidentiary hearing and later sentencing, on three counts of sexual exploitation of a minor and one count of possession or use of a controlled substance, all second-degree felonies.
Judge Brian Cannell imposed the maximum sentence of one-to-fifteen years in the Utah State Prison for all four charges. Two of the terms were ordered to be served consecutively and the remaining two concurrently.
Earlier, two clinical psychologists testified that Larson suffers from fetal alcohol syndrome and other mental illnesses. They said that even though he had episodes of aggression and anger, he would not pose an immediate threat to himself or others, if sentenced to prison.
Judge Cannell said he realized Larson had mental illnesses but he had to error on the side of protecting society. He described the abuse to the two children as an ugly circumstance, not justified by mental illness.
Larson was arrested in August after police officers received a tip he was sharing child pornography over the internet. When investigators scanned his computer they found multiple images. They also found pictures on his cell phone, taken of local children.
State attorney Barbara Lachmar said Larson had taken advantage of the two children while babysitting them. He reportedly told them he had to take nude pictures of them for a college class. She also said there may have been more sexual abuse between him and the children but they didn’t have clear evidence of it.
Larson originally faced 15 charges but accepted a plea deal in December, pleading guilty but mentally ill. He was being held in Cache County Jail without bail.
Before being sentenced, Larson told the court he wished to apologize to the people he hurt saying he had screwed up.
The father of the two children told the court Larson had mentally scared his son and given his daughter nightmares. He said, “My kids have to live with this till the day they die.”
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