After a three-day trial that ended with nearly five hours of jury deliberation Thursday, Jonathan Rivera of Towanda was found guilty on 12 charges related to the sexual assault of four young girls, according to Bradford County Assistant District Attorney Brian Gallagher.
Rivera was charged in June 2018 after the Pennsylvania State Police received two initial reports of abuse in April 2018. In one case, one girl ended up choking on a lollipop that Rivera had shoved in her mouth, according to police, and had to be resuscitated by Guthrie Towanda Memorial EMS responders and then life-flighted to Geisinger in Danville for further treatment. From an interview with one of the mothers, police noted that Rivera claimed the girls – who were ages seven and eight at the time of the reporting – would do inappropriate things around him, such as try to pull his pants down and touch his privates, and he would tell them how wrong it was to do that. The resulting investigation uncovered two other abuse victims – ages 10 and 15 at the time of the police report.
Rivera was found guilty to the felonies of endangering the welfare of a child in the third degree, four counts of corruption of minors in the third degree, two counts of indecent assault of a child in the third degree, two misdemeanor counts of indecent assault of a child in the first degree, two misdemeanor counts of indecent exposure in the first degree, and misdemeanor attempted indecent assault of a child in the first degree.