Proposed plea bargain for former Yough Senior High School assistant coach rejected
Police and the alleged victim objected to a proposed deal that would have allowed a former Yough Senior High School baseball coach to serve probation on charges of asking a boy to send pornographic photos of himself.
So the case against Casey Gilkey, 45, has been sent back for a preliminary hearing, scuttling the deal that would have allowed the former assistant coach's criminal record to be expunged at the conclusion of his two-year probation term.
Gilkey of South Huntingdon was charged in June with child pornography, unlawful contact with a minor and corruption of minors for allegedly using a female alias to request that a teenage boy text message him pictures of the boy's genitals.
Defense attorney Mark Bolkovac has said Gilkey was playing a prank on the boy.
Gilkey had been scheduled to appear in court next week before Westmoreland County Judge Rita Hathaway for a hearing to admit him in the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition program for first-time, nonviolent offenders.
That program does not require defendants to admit guilt and allows them to have their record expunged at the completion of a probationary period. In addition to the probation term, Gilkey was to be barred from coaching baseball for two years.
Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Dupilka, in a letter to the defense, said the prosecution would object to having Gilkey's record expunged.
As a result, Bolkovac in a court filing said his client would not accept any deal that was different from what was agreed to prior to a scheduled preliminary hearing in July. The hearing was never conducted and Bolkovac said his client is entitled to have the case be heard by a judge to determine whether there is enough evidence to sustain the criminal charges.
“Failure to conduct a preliminary hearing denies the defendant of his due process rights,” Bolkovac said.
Hathaway ordered District Judge Charles Christner conduct a preliminary hearing. The date for that hearing has not been set.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or email@example.com.