Former SFFR Chief Pleads Guilty to One Count of Child Pornography Possession

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Former Sioux Falls Fire Chief Jim Sideras will not be heading to trial in his ongoing child pornography case. That trial was supposed to start next week.

In a surprise move this morning, Sideras pled guilty to one of his ten charges.

Sideras, once the top of command at Sioux Falls Fire Rescue, now a convicted felon. He’s pled guilty to a single charge of possession of child pornography.

“At this point we are pleased the defendant took accountability for his actions and we look forward to the conclusion of this case,” said State’s Attorney Aaron McGowan.

Sideras was indicted on ten child pornography charges in June of last year. Investigators were lead to his Yahoo email address “sandilikestoplay10” after investigating a case in Massachusetts.

Sideras had previously pled not guilty to all of his charges. As to what prompted the decision to make a plea deal, Sideras’ attorney had “no comment” after the hearing, but in exchange for pleading guilty to the one count, prosecutors are dropping the other nine.

Sideras is facing a sentence of up to ten years in the State Penitentiary and a $20,000 fine. He’ll also have to register as a sex offender.

Before he’s sentenced, Sideras will undergo a psycho-sexual evaluation.

Sideras’ sentencing hearing will likely be scheduled in a matter of months. The Human Resource Director for the City of Sioux Falls says regardless of his plea, Sideras is still entitled to his pension, after serving 34 years with fire rescue.

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