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December 7, 2006

Former UPJ staffer sentenced

A Cambria County judge has sentenced former Pitt-Johnstown employee Jeffrey Haire for his involvement in a sexual relationship with a Cambria County teenager.

Haire pleaded guilty in August to one count of corruption of a minor, a first-degree misdemeanor that carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.

Haire was sentenced on Nov. 27 to “not less than 9 months nor more than 24 months less a day,” said Cambria County District Attorney Patrick Kiniry, who explained that sentences under 24 months remain under the control of the Cambria County probation office, rather than the state. Haire was given credit for 10 days served in Cambria County Jail and placed on house arrest with a monitor.

He also was fined $5,000 plus court costs of $997.40 and must pay $400 per month for the cost of the electronic monitor.

A second former UPJ employee, William A. Gillin, who pleaded guilty to having a sexual relationship with the same boy, is scheduled for sentencing Jan. 8. He awaits word on whether he will be labeled a sexually violent predator under Megan’s Law.

The two were among five men arrested in March for their involvement in the sexual relationships that developed following Internet chat room conversations with the boy. Gillin and Haire were suspended without pay from the University following their arrests and later resigned.

The boy’s age has been a crucial factor in the case.

Haire, who had been a part-time police officer at UPJ, became involved after the boy had turned 16. Gillin, who had been manager of Alumni Relations at UPJ, has found himself in bigger trouble because he became involved with the teen before the boy turned 16, which is the age of consent in Pennsylvania.

Gillin pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent assault on a person less than 16 years old, two counts of unlawful contact or communication with a minor and two counts of corruption of a minor.

Gillin’s guilty plea on the unlawful contact charge invokes Megan’s Law, which means he must be evaluated by the state’s Sexual Offenders Assessment Board to determine whether he will be labeled a sexually violent predator, said Kiniry. Gillin’s plea means he must register with the state police as a sexual offender for 10 years, but if the assessment board deems him a sexually violent predator, he will be required to register for life.

Gillin’s sentencing has been delayed until the assessment board can complete its evaluation, said Kiniry.

—Kimberly K. Barlow

Filed under: Feature,Volume 39 Issue 8

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