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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of West Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 3, 2021

Pennsylvania Man Sentenced to More than Eight Years in Prison for Sex Offense Against Minor

BECKLEY, W.Va. – A Pennsylvania man was sentenced today to 97 months in prison for a sex offense against a minor.  Gregory Thomas O’Connor, 48, of Stahlstown, Pennsylvania, previously pleaded guilty to travel in interstate commerce to engage in illicit sexual activity with a minor. Following release from prison, O’Connor will be placed on 15 years of supervised release and will be required to register as a sex offender.

According to court documents, O’Connor admitted that on August 7, 2020, he initiated contact with a person on a Kik Messaging group for West Virginia teens. Believing this person to be a 13-year-old girl from Beckley, O’Connor engaged in conversations over the next 6 weeks wherein he told the minor he wanted to meet her to engage in sexual activity and also coached her on masturbation and watching pornography in order to prepare for their sexual encounter. On September 2, 2020, O’Connor intended to travel to Beckley to meet the minor. He drove from Pennsylvania to Fairmont but then had to turn around due to a work emergency. He continued to discuss traveling at a future date to meet the girl for sexual activity.  

Acting United States Attorney Lisa G. Johnston made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the FBI Child Exploitation and Human Trafficking Task Force.

United States District Judge Frank W. Volk imposed the sentence.  Assistant United States Attorneys Jennifer Rada Herrald and Timothy Boggess are handling the prosecution.

This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative of the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to locate, apprehend, and prosecute those who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.justice.gov/psc.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 5:21-cr-00073.

 

 

 

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Topic(s): 
Project Safe Childhood
Updated September 3, 2021