Harrisburg man sentenced on human trafficking charges for soliciting minor

Harrisburg man sentenced on human trafficking charges for soliciting minor

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A Harrisburg man was sentenced to 15-30 years in prison and must register as a sex offender for life for attempting to solicit a minor for sex while interacting with an undercover account.

The Dauphin County District Attorney’s office says Jeffrey Pettinato pleaded guilty to charges including trafficking in individuals, criminal solicitation to commit involuntary deviate sexual intercourse of a child under the age of 16, and criminal solicitation to promote prostitution of a minor.

In October 2023, Pettinato interacted with the undercover account that depicted a 15-year-old girl. Despite knowing the “child’s” age, the District Attorney’s office says Pettinato repeatedly offered $50-100 for sexual favors, discussed sexual topics, and requested naked photos.

The District Attorney’s office says Pettinato also sent inappropriate videos and used a secret phone because he was on parole supervision for similar offenses.

The District Attorney’s office says under Pennsylvania law, engaging in a commercial sex act with a minor is human trafficking.

Detective Kevin Leiss of the Derry Township Police Department investigated the case, and the Dauphin County Human Trafficking Task Force prosecuted the case. Senior Deputy District Attorney was the lead prosecutor.

If you or someone you know needs assistance regarding human trafficking you are asked to call 717-780-7086 to speak to the Dauphin County Human Trafficking Advocate.

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