Probation violation puts predator back in prison years after abusing 8 boys

Lancaster

LANCASTER, Pa. (WHTM) — A repeat sex offender was sentenced to his longest prison term yet for a recent probation violation stemming from a 1988 conviction for abusing eight boys.

According to the Lancaster County District Attorney’s Office, Kevin Portello, 54, was a student at Lancaster Bible College decades ago when he contacted and abused the boys while working with a youth group.

Partello was sentenced in 1988 to five to 20 years in prison, plus 20 years of probation.

At a sentencing hearing Friday in Lancaster County Court, Assistant District Attorney Fritz Haverstick outlined several new convictions since 1988, saying Partello has been unable to refrain from contacting children.

Lancaster County Judge Merrill Spahn Jr. sentenced Partello, to 15 to 30 years in prison on the recent probation violation.

The DA’s office says that violation involved a conviction for contacting a “15-year-old boy” online and arranging an in-person meeting in Ohio. At the meeting, the “boy” turned out to be an undercover officer.

Partello lives in Ohio but was sentenced in Lancaster County because his original conviction happened here.

The lengthy prison term is not common in probation violation sentencings, but ADA Haverstick said Partello continues to abuse children despite incarceration and supervision.

Partello’s 30-year history is “the best predictor that he will victimize another child,” ADA Haverstick said while requesting a sentence that would keep Partello under supervision for the rest of his life.

Judge Spahn, while ordering sentence, said the community is not safe without Partello serving a “significant period” of incarceration.

According to ADA Haverstick here is a timeline of Partello’s offenses:

  • 1993: Partello paroled from his 5-to-20-year term.
  • 1996: Partello is caught with a child at his home; remanded back to prison.
  • 2000: Partello is paroled.
  • 2002: Partello is convicted in Ohio of gross sexual exploitation for abuse of a child while serving as that child’s Alcoholics Anonymous sponsor; sentenced to prison. The court deemed Partello a sexually violent predator and classified him a pedophile.
  • 2017: Partello fails to register his whereabouts with police, as required; sentenced to 6 months in prison.
  • 2019: Partello again fails to register information with police, as required. 2019: Partello contacts “boy” online, arranges an in-person meeting. Convicted of importuning, attempted unlawful sexual contact with a minor.

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