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Violent past, child porn land Youngwood man in prison

| Wednesday, July 17, 2013, 1:24 p.m.

A Youngwood man will spend six years and eight months in prison as much for his violent past as for the 10 gigabytes of child pornography police found on his laptop, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.

Joshua J. Gildea, 26, of Youngwood pleaded guilty in March to a single count of possessing child pornography. He was sentenced to 10 years of probation.

Gildea asked Judge Gustave Diamond for “one last chance to prove I can be a productive member of society.”

Later in the hearing, he interrupted the prosecutor's argument to say, “For the last two years, all I've done is try to change my life.”

Joyce Gildea, his mother, said they moved from Fayette County to Westmoreland County to get her son away from the people who were bad influences on him.

“Joshua has had a long history of clinical depression, and he need counseling for it instead of jail,” she said.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Smolar said there was no evidence that depression played a role in Gildea's violent crimes as well as notebook entries filled with lyrics about killing police officers, judges and jail guards.

She called Greensburg police Sgt. Robert Jones to testify about the double-edge butterfly knife and “brass” knuckles, which were made out of some other material, discovered in Gildea's apartment. Gustave said Gildea's violent past includes incidents involving assault with a shotgun, assault with a meat cleaver and threatening to kill a family with a baseball bat and burn down their home.

Jones, who searched Gildea's laptop, said Gildea had replaced the Microsoft Windows icon on his opening screen to a scantily clad, cartoon girl labeled “Lolita.” The laptop didn't contain any adult pornography but contained 125 videos and thousands of pictures of prepubescent girls, Jones said.

Smolar argued that part of Gildea's violence is connected to the hip-hop duo Insane Clown Posse and that many of its fans have been convicted of committing violent crimes.

Daniel Gildea, one of Joshua's three older brothers, said he gave his younger brother the CDs when Joshua Gildea was six or seven because the duo was popular with kids. Daniel Gildea, an Army military policeman stationed in Alaska, said he knows at least 10 other people in the Army who are fans of the duo.

“None of them have criminal records,” he said.

Assistant Federal Public Defender Thomas Livingston argued that Gildea wrote the violent lyrics when he was 16 and 17, and they were the “wanna-be gesture of a would-be rapper boy in a troubled life.”

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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