Furry artist Mitch Beiro sentenced to prison and probation
Furry artist Mitch Beiro has been sentenced to ten years in prison and lifetime probation, after pleading guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor under fifteen. The charges relate to his arrest in October 2012, following a police investigation into the sharing of child sexual abuse images via peer-to-peer Internet networks.
In December 2011, police detectives in Tucson, Arizona, learned that child pornography was being shared or downloaded to a house next door to where Mitch Beiro was living. They subsequently discovered that Beiro had been using an unsecured wireless network to download the files.
Detectives obtained a search warrant for Beiro's home. When the warrant was served on October 3, 2012, Beiro confessed that they would find "hundreds" of child porn videos and images on his computer. When the case went to court, evidence was given detailing nineteen videos found during a forensic examination of the computer, including some of children who were "barely old enough to walk".
Beiro pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual exploitation of a minor under fifteen, and was sentenced to ten in years in prison by Judge Michael Cruikshank. After serving his sentence, Beiro will be on lifetime probation. According to court documents, Beiro has never been arrested before, does not use drugs or alcohol, has "serious health issues", and is remorseful. "I welcome treatment of any kind," Beiro told a probation officer. "I want to be a productive member of society."
In the furry fandom, Beiro was an artist whose works were published in Huzzah, Wild, and several other publications. He frequently attended furry conventions, and was a guest of honor at ConFurence 11 (2000). At a joke wedding during ConFurence 12, he married the character Minerva Mink.