A soldier learned his punishment Monday for sexually abusing a three-year-old girl while he was on leave last year.
Richard Lafayette, 38, was stationed in Afghanistan last year when prosecutors said he started an online relationship with a woman in Williamsport. That relationship eventually turned sexual and involved a three-year-old girl.
A judge sentenced Lafayette to seven-and-a-half to 15 years in state prison after he admitted to abusing the three year old last April.
Investigators said Lafayette chatted online with Samantha Mathers of Williamsport about having sex with a young child.
Mathers still faces charges.
The Lycoming County judge also found Lafayette to be a sexually violent predator which means he will have to register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law.