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Married dad posed as a teen, lured kids as young as 8 to send lewd images, DA's office says

Richard Lee Devito pleaded guilty to posing as a teen boy to get hundreds of lewd images and videos from over 25 children as young as 8 years old, according to U.S. Attorney Benjamin Glassman. The Batavia, Ohio, man was accused of having the girls perform sex acts.
Richard Lee Devito pleaded guilty to posing as a teen boy to get hundreds of lewd images and videos from over 25 children as young as 8 years old, according to U.S. Attorney Benjamin Glassman. The Batavia, Ohio, man was accused of having the girls perform sex acts. Butler County Jail

Richard Lee Devito would pose as a teenager on the messaging application "ooVoo," authorities say, and then lure young children into sending him lewd videos and images.

The 34-year-old — a married father from Batavia, Ohio — pleaded guilty to a single count of production of child pornography, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of Ohio. He is expected to face between 15 to 30 years behind bars.

U.S. Attorney Benjamin C. Glassman said Devito tricked over 25 children into sending him nude and sexually graphic videos. His victims were usually between the ages of 8 and 12, authorities say, and he frequently had children perform sexual acts with objects.

Authorities provided a specific example of what Devito allegedly solicited from underage children. An 8-year-old from Texas said the man friend requested her on "ooVoo"in 2016 and then had her perform "sex acts" — including one with her dog, according to court documents obtained by The Cincinnati Enquirer. He's also accused of asking the young girl to "twerk."

Devito was arrested in 2016, according to WLWT5.

Over 1,700 pictures and just under 70 videos of that girl and another young relative were found on Devito's iPhone, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, and there were thousands of other child pornography videos and images found in his possession.

After the man pleaded guilty on Tuesday, neighbor Arlene Kaufmann told WLWT5 that he was "glad to finally see it come to a head and get done."

But he also said the incident is chilling, as Devito seemed to be a normal man with a wife and young daughter.

"It was frightening, it was frightening," he told WLWT5. "Again, you just don't know what goes on behind closed doors."

The Cincinnati Enquirer reported that it's not yet known when the man will be sentenced.

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