Former teacher and coach pleads guilty to child sexual exploitation charges

Project Safe Childhood is a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice.

Erie, Pennsylvania: 32-year-old Gregory Samuel Mancini, a former teacher at Barber National Institute and basketball coach at Cathedral Prep has plead guilty to charges related to child sexual exploitation.

 

According to the three count indictment, Mancini was charged with traveling in interstate commerce for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct, knowingly receiving and attempting to receive images of child sexual abuse, and knowingly possessing and attempt to possess child pornography.

 

Mancini had no prior criminal record before these charges were brought against him.

 

Mancini was first arrested by the Hall County Sheriff's Office on November 2, 2018 after he traveled to Georgia to meet with a 13-year-old boy that he had groomed for months.

 

According to the statement posted by the U.S. Attorney's Office of Western Pennsylvania for Project Safe Childhood, Mancini informed the boy that he intended to visit him on November 2, 2018. After he provided that information though, despite repeatedly telling the victim to keep quiet about their contact, the Sheriff's Office was contacted.

 

In the time leading up to the scheduled visit an undercover detective assumed the child's identity online and intercepted communications from Mancini.

 

Some of the texts that Mancini reportedly sent to the detective, believing he was speaking with the child included, "I want u, I love u," and "I want to hug u... kiss u... love u."

 

After his arrest in Hall County, the case against Mancini was transferred back to Erie, Pennsylvania for further investigation.

 

A search warrant was executed on Mancini's residence on January 9, 2020 which revealed "hundreds of items of child sexual abuse material depicting children as young as two being raped and abused by adults."

 

Additionally, a journal was located in which Mancini wrote that he was "attracted to younger boys."

 

United States District Judge Susan Paradise Baxter scheduled Mancini's sentencing for May 6, 2022.

 

He faces a possible maximum sentence of up to 70 years in prison and a fine up to $750,000.