ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. — A former police officer who worked with the Maryland Heights Police Department pleaded guilty Thursday to a child pornography charge.
According to a press release from the St. Louis County prosecuting attorney's office, 30-year-old Nicholas Haglof pleaded guilty to one count of accessing with the intent to view child pornography.
The press release said Haglof admitted to viewing hundreds of images of child pornography on his laptop and cellphone in 2019 and 2020. The release said he later deleted the images, but a tip from the search engine Bing alerted the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.
According to an emergency suspension application from August 2020, Haglof was working as a police officer with the Maryland Heights Police Department at the time of the crime. A statement from the Maryland Heights Police Department in August of 2020 said he was no longer a police officer with the Maryland Heights Police Department.
The press release from the prosecuting attorney's office said the prosecutors will seek a four-year prison sentence. He will also be required to pay a $3,000 fine for each victim who has been identified in the images and requests restitution.
The case was investigated by the St. Louis County Police Department Special Investigations Unit and the FBI and was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood. Project Safe Childhood is a nationwide initiative launched by the Department of Justice in 2006 to combat the "growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse."