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What had already been an undeniably wild month for former Memphis firefighter and Southhaven alderman Ronnie Hale got even wilder and worse after his recent arrest by federal agents. Hale surrendered to marshals at the Oxford, Mississippi, court house on a child pornography charge, news media outlets reported.

Hale was arrested in late November on a prostitute procurement charge. A search warrant issued in that case led to the child porn allegations, his criminal defense attorney said.

After his arrest in Oxford, he posted bail and then went with his lawyer to suburban Southhaven, where he submitted his Board of Aldermen resignation.

Hale was arrested Nov. 22 on the misdemeanor prostitution charge. After that arrest, he was fired from his firefighter’s job by the city of Memphis.

His lawyer said a search warrant was issued after the prostitution arrest and electronic devices were examined. Police then apparently found sexually explicit photos and videos of minors on either a phone or laptop.

If convicted on the child porn charge, he faces a possible sentence of 20 years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

Because of the harsh potential punishments, many people arrested on those charges will talk to police and prosecutors, hoping that doing so will help them avoid the worst sanctions. In reality, they are often guaranteeing themselves unfavorable outcomes.

If you face similar charges, speak instead with an attorney dedicated to protecting your rights and freedom. Contact Jack P. Sherman, Attorney at Law, for a consultation about your legal options.