An actor who played a grandfather on a Disney Channel sitcom will spend two years in federal prison for trying to lure a minor into sex.
Disney Show Actor Will Serve Prison Time On Child Sex Charges
Stoney Westmoreland To Serve Two Years In Prison
Stoney Westmoreland, 52, who was on the show "Andi Mack," pleaded guilty to a charge of using interstate facilities to transmit information about a minor.
He will serve 24 months in prison and 10 years of supervised release, rather than the 10 years in prison he was initially facing, TMZ reported Sunday.
Stoney Westmoreland Thought He Was Meeting Up With Young Boy
Westmore was originally charged in 2018 after he allegedly booked a car to meet what he thought was a 13-year-old for sex while filming in Salt Lake City. He was there filming for the show Andi Mack, in which he played Henry “Ham” Mack, grandfather to the show's protagonist.
Westmoreland is a fairly well-known actor who has played in some popular shows. He also starred in S.W.A.T., Better Call Saul, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Scandal, and Gilmore Girls.
Westmoreland Was Actually Chatting With Police Officer
According to his arrest affidavit, Westmoreland was using Grindr, a dating app most commonly used by gay men, and thought he was talking to a young boy. He made plans to bring him back to his hotel room after they met in person.
Instead, he was actually chatting with an undercover police officer. Police said he was sending and asking for pornographic photos, prosecutors say.
Disney Cut Ties With Stoney Westmoreland Right After His Arrest
Westmoreland’s defense lawyer Wendy Lewis said claimed that the actor was aware the entire time that he was talking to an adult and thought they were roleplaying, according to TMZ. She claimed Westmoreland had an escape plan in place in case he arrived to meet and it was actually a minor instead of an adult.
"Had it been a minor, he was planning on leaving," Lewis said. "The risk of 10 years or more, though, particularly with a Utah jury and homosexuality, led to the decision of taking the plea."
Disney cut ties with Westmoreland hours after his 2018 arrest.
“Given the nature of the charges and our responsibility for the welfare of employed minors, we have released him from his recurring role and he will not be returning to work on the series which wraps production on its third season next week,” the company said in a statement at the time.