Florida Firefighter Arrested on Multiple Counts of Possession of Child Porn

By Jannis Falkenstern
Jannis Falkenstern
Jannis Falkenstern
Jannis Falkenstern is an Epoch Times reporter who covers the state of Florida.
August 10, 2022 Updated: August 10, 2022

PUNTA GORDA, Fla.–A captain with the Polk County Fire Station was arrested on Aug. 7 on more than 25 counts of possession of child pornography at the fire station where he was on duty.

At the time of his arrest, Brian Steger, 40, told deputies that he had set up an internet account in his name at the station for “personal use.”

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office, acting on a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, responded to the Lake Wales fire station where Steger was on duty. When detectives located his computer they found he was “actively downloading porn files” that contained depictions of children “as young at five years old being sexually assaulted,” according to police reports.

Epoch Times Photo
Brian Steger, a captain with Polk County, Fla. Fire and Rescue, was arrested on child pornography charges on Aug. 7, 2022. (Courtesy, The Polk County Sheriff’s Office)

Steger was arrested and charged with 25 counts of possession of child pornography and one count of promotion of child pornography.

Steger resigned his position in lieu of being terminated. He had worked as a firefighter for the county since 2003, according to the county human resources department.

All devices belonging to Steger were seized and will be examined, the sheriff’s office said. They went on to say if any additional files containing child pornography are discovered, Steger will face additional charges.

“One of the most important kinds of investigations we do is identifying those who are distributing child pornography. Those who download, view, and exchange these terrible images and videos fuel the market for exploitative images that are dependent upon the continued and ongoing sexual abuse of children,” Sheriff Grady Judd said in a written statement. “The fact that the person we arrested is a public servant is especially troubling; we will make sure he is held accountable for his actions.”

Steger remains in the Polk County Jail and is being held without bond.

According to the sheriff’s office, child pornography is designated as “enhanced” when it meets one of the following criteria:

  • A child who is younger than 5 years old
  • Sadomasochistic abuse involving a child
  • Sexual battery of a child
  • Sexual bestiality involving a child
  • Any movie involving a child, regardless of length
Jannis Falkenstern is an Epoch Times reporter who covers the state of Florida.