Judge asked to reconsider ex-guard's sentencing

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Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge David R. Cashman is expected to decide next week whether he should modify Harry Nicoletti's sentence. The former corrections officer at the State Correctional Institution Pittsburgh was found guilty of 27 of 79 charges related to abusing inmates in his control.

A jury found Nicoletti, 61, of Coraopolis, guilty on 12 counts of official oppression, eight counts of simple assault, three counts each of criminal solicitation and indecent exposure and one count of terroristic threats. Only one count of criminal solicitation was a felony -- the rest were misdemeanors.

Assistant district attorney Jon Pittman argued Friday that Mr. Nicoletti should have received a harsher punishment than six months of house arrest and five years of probation.

But to defense attorney Steve Colafella, the sentence was tough enough considering the embarrassment Mr. Nicoletti endured among his friends and family. He added that his client's probation officer has had no complaints about Mr. Nicoletti's behavior since he was sentenced.

Judge Cashman raised concerns that Mr. Nicoletti would have to endure similar abuse that he inflicted if he were to serve time in a correctional facility.

The judge will take the next few days to make a decision on the matter.

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