Emporium Substitute Teacher Receives No Jail Time in Pornography Sentencing
By Alex Belser
An Emporium substitute teacher paid a student for pictures of some of his classmates, and today he told the judge he’s hoping to earn back trust that he’s lost.
We have more on why the district attorney says some parents in Emporium are sure to be upset about today’s result.
The former teacher who’s been on house arrest learned on Tuesday that he won’t go to jail.
Jon Serianni, 42, got five years on a county intermediate punishment program.
According to court records, he’d pleaded guilty to paying a 15-year-old boy a total of $200 for a thumb drive with nearly 200 pictures of girls, with the boy later bragging about the money he made.
The DA says many girls in the pics were from Cameron County High School.
“Were those nude pictures?” we asked. “Partial, partial nudity, that’s why they’re pornographic,” says DA Jeanne Miglicio.
One part of the complaint says out of nine girls, the officer knew of four who were under 18.
“Mr. Serianni has been on house arrest for the last year-and-a-half or more, so he’s been in compliance with all the things the courts have required of him. He’s going to be under high-intensity supervision,” says defense attorney David Shrager.
Serianni will likely still surf the web, but probation officers said in court they could stop in for random computer scans, and tape his hard drive with evidence tape so it isn’t removed.
“He’s mentally devastated. He lost his career. He embarrassed his family. He has lost the respect of his peers and he’s working to get his life back in order,” says Shrager.
In outlining his decision, Judge Richard Masson said this case was less serious than one in Plum where a teacher had direct contact with a student and got 2 to 5 years.
However, Masson said it was worse than just viewing it in a home setting because Serianni had approached a male student in school and asked for pictures.
“Is it an appropriate punishment? I defer to the court for punishment. I did not give any input,” says Miglicio.
Miglicio started as DA after the plea deal was accepted, and says Serianni could have gotten 9 months in jail under standard sentencing.
“I do know that he is a lifetime registered sex offender. That is at no small cost to his personal liberties,” says Miglicio.
The judge noted that Serianni sought treatment quickly, and has no prior record.
EMPORIUM, Pa. – Police say a Pennsylvania substitute teacher bought pictures of nude female students from one of their classmates.
Forty-one-year-old Jon Serianni was charged Tuesday with child pornography and corruption of minors after investigators searched his phone and found 190 pictures of girls who were nude or in sexually explicit poses.
The Emporium man was a substitute high school teacher in the Cameron County School District when he allegedly overheard some male students discussing the pictures. Serianni then texted one of the boys and offered to pay for some of them. The boy tells police he received less than $300 from Serianni.
Serianni faces a preliminary hearing Jan. 22 at the Cameron County Courthouse. Defense attorney David Shrager says he’s just begun investigating the charges.