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Press Release

Pittsburgh Man Admits He Failed to Register as a Sex Offender

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Pennsylvania

PITTSBURGH - A former resident of New Jersey and current resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty in federal court to a charge of failure to register as a sex offender, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced today.

Leon McGirt, also known as “Leon McGirk”, “Leon McGrit” and “Leon McGirle”, age 45, pleaded guilty to one count before United States District Judge Cathy Bissoon.

In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that on March 20, 2012, McGirt pleaded guilty to Criminal Attempt and Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Minor in Essex County, New Jersey and was sentenced on June 4, 2012. As a result of his New Jersey conviction, McGirt is required to register under the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (“SORNA”) in any jurisdiction in which he resides. After McGirt was released from prison in New Jersey on December 13, 2018, he traveled in interstate commerce, from the State of New Jersey to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and stayed in Pennsylvania and knowingly failed to register as a sex offender as required by SORNA.

Judge Bissoon scheduled sentencing for June 2, 2022 at 10 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of not more than ten years in prison, a fine of $250,000.00, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offense and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Pending sentencing, the court permitted McGirt to remain on bond.

Assistant United States Attorney Heidi M. Grogan is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The United States Marshals Service conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of McGirt.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by the United States Attorneys’ 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 individuals who sexually exploit children, and to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit

Updated February 11, 2022

Project Safe Childhood