Westmoreland man gets 21 years in prison for child sex abuse

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A Westmoreland County man who last year videotaped himself abusing an 8-year-old girl was sentenced today to 21 years in prison for producing child pornography, and could serve much longer when a state court weighs in.

Timothy Eugene Shearer, 55, of Avonmore, had nothing to say for himself at his sentencing hearing, and his attorney didn't have kind words for him, either.

"He's going to leave this building hanging his head for the terrible thing he's done," said assistant federal public defender Tom Livingston. "Then he's going to go back to state court where he's going to get banged by a judge."

Mr. Livingston said the best he could hope for was that the courts "give him a chance to die with dignity, at home, with some remnant of family."

Shearer faces state charges including rape of a child, statutory sexual assault of someone under the age of 11 and involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child. Trial is set for Oct. 7 in Westmoreland County.

Mr. Livingston said he probably faces a 20- to 40-year sentence for those charges.

"Does he have any bargaining leverage? No," said Mr. Livingston. "Why? Because there's a video."

Mr. Livingston persuaded U.S. District Judge Mark Hornak to let 15 years of the federal sentence run concurrently with any state sentence, and six years consecutively. That means that even after Shearer's state sentence is complete, he'll serve another six years in federal prison.

Assistant U.S. attorney Jessica Lieber Smolar prosecuted the case and presented testimony from the victim's aunt. The aunt said the girl has lost weight, is depressed, can't sleep and "seems to be fearful of adult males."

The Post-Gazette does not identify victims of sexual crimes.

breaking - neigh_westmoreland

Rich Lord: rlord@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1542 or Twitter @richelord


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