Former school trainer sentenced to 15 years

Pratt

ROCHESTER – A Conesus man who worked as a contracted athletic trainer in area schools has been sentenced to 15 years in state prison.

Austin Pratt, 32, was convicted on enticement of a minor and sentenced to serve 180 months in prison by U.S. District Judge Elizabeth A. Wolford, according to an announcement Monday afternoon by U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy Jr.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa M. Marangola, who handled the case, stated that between November 2018 and February 2019, the defendant, while working as a school athletic trainer, engaged in an ongoing relationship with a teenage girl. Pratt used Instagram and Facebook to communicate with the minor, encouraging the victim to engage in a sexual relationship and to exchange sexually explicit photos with him.

Pratt pleaded guilty in October 2020 in federal court to enticement of a minor.

Pratt was employed by F.F. Thompson Hospital, Canandaigua, and contracted out as one of several athletic trainers assigned to the Geneseo Central School District. He also worked with students in the Phelps-Clifton Springs (Midlakes) and Bloomfield Central School districts, police previously told the Livingston County News.

The hospital fired Pratt in January 2019 after he was arrested.

State Police started investigating Pratt in January 2019 after the parents of a 15-year-old girl he had treated as an athletic trainer found a large number of text messages from Pratt on their daughter’s phone.

During an interview with State Police, Pratt’s victim told investigators that in November 2018, Pratt began texting her. Simple texts regarding an injury Pratt’s victim suffered led to nude photographs being exchanged between the two.

Pratt also raped his victim and engaged in other sexual contact with her during the course of their relationship, State Police said.

Pratt’s plea in federal court resolved all the federal charges against him. In addition to enticement of a minor, he had been charged with production, receipt and possession of child pornography and transfer of obscene matter to a minor.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Barry Chase; the Rochester Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia; and the Livingston County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of District Attorney Gregory J. McCaffrey.

Johnson Newspapers 7.1