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Ex-Police Officer, 42, Pleads Not Guilty To Possessing Child Porn

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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RIVERSIDE (CBS) —  An ex-police officer allegedly caught with sexually explicit images of children on his home computer Thursday pleaded not guilty to possession of child pornography.

Hector Jesus Zamora, 42, could face a year in jail if convicted.

The defendant — who was arrested on Nov. 1 — appeared with his attorney before Riverside County Superior Court Judge Becky Dugan. She set a felony settlement conference in the case for Jan. 31.

Zamora remains free on $5,000 bail.

According to the District Attorney’s Office, members of the sheriff’s Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement (SAFE) team allegedly located two-dozen explicit pictures, some of them depicting underage girls, on his desktop.

The SAFE task force investigation stemmed from an FBI undercover operation that began in January 2010, according to District Attorney’s Office spokesman John Hall.

He said Zamora previously worked as a police officer for the city of Holtville, near El Centro, and has lived in Temecula since 2005.

Circumstances behind the defendant’s departure from the police force were not disclosed.

According to Hall, the alleged pornographic images on Zamora’s computer appear to have been taken about 10 years ago, while the defendant was still in law enforcement.

The children, who have not been identified, could be from either Riverside or San Diego County.

Anyone with information was urged to call the SAFE tip line at (866) 723-3595.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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