Ex-trooper gets 5 years for soliciting sex
Boy he met via the Internet was actually an agent
A federal judge gave the minimum sentence to a former Massachusetts state trooper and decorated Army war veteran who admitted trying to solicit sex over the Internet from someone he thought was a 14-year-old boy.
Brian O'Hare, 46, of Lancaster was sentenced to the mandatory minimum of five years in prison yesterday in federal court in Boston after he pleaded guilty.
"The Internet has brought many wonderful things to the world, but it has also brought many vile things," US District Court Judge George A. O'Toole Jr. said moments before issuing the sentence to O'Hare, who had faced a maximum of 30 years in prison.
O'Hare, dressed in a black suit, walked into the courtroom with his brother, sister, and sister-in-law. Standing next to his lawyer, Richard Egbert, he gave a brief statement before the sentencing.
"I take full responsibility for my actions, and I want to apologize to my family for the embarrassment and shame I've caused." He also apologized to the Army National Guard and the Massachusetts State Police.
O'Hare told the judge he wanted to get this episode of his life behind him.
"I want to be a father again," he said. As he was led out of the courtroom, O'Hare waved to his relatives. His sister, tears running down her face, waved back.
The sentencing capped a dramatic fall from grace for O'Hare. He joined the Massachusetts National Guard in 1990 and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel, leading the 211th Military Police Battalion, according to a Guard spokesman. He was the Battalion's executive officer at Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan from August 2002 to February 2003 and also served in Iraq, overseeing training of Iraqi police in Balad from April to September 2003.
O'Hare received two Bronze Stars for his service in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as medals for good conduct, meritorious service, and achievement. He led military security at Logan International Airport after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and during the 2004 Democratic National Convention. He was a member of the Massachusetts State Police for 20 years, last assigned to the Holden barracks.
A State Police spokewoman said officials would not comment on the case, because O'Hare is no longer a trooper. O'Hare must now submit a DNA sample to a state database and register as a sex offender upon his release.
Prosecutors alleged that O'Hare, using the name Ranger 1777, struck up a conversation in August 2005 with someone he thought was a 14-year-old boy in an America Online chatroom titled "SCHOOLBOIS SHOWERSM4." But the person he was chatting with was actually FBI agent Jeremy Morrissey, working in an Internet sting operation.
O'Hare was arrested last February when he drove to Meadow Glen Mall on Route 16 in Medford for what he thought was a meeting with the boy.