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Former lifeguard sentenced for child sex abuse

LA PLATA, MD—Tony Covington, State’s Attorney for Charles County, announced that on Thursday, September 27, 2018, Charles County Circuit Court Judge H. James West sentenced Carlos Sorto Alvarez, 31, to 13 years in prison for Sexual Abuse of a Minor and two counts of Soliciting Child Pornography.

On May 21, 2018, Alvarez entered a guilty plea to the above listed charges in Charles County Circuit Court in front of the Honorable Judge H. James West.

On December 21, 2017, officers met with the victim, who was under 18 years old, after being contacted by the Department of Social Services.

An investigation revealed that the victim met Alvarez at a community pool where Alvarez was a lifeguard. The victim was under 14 years of age at the time. Over the course of two years, Alvarez and the victim participated in several recreational activities together. During this time, Alvarez would buy the victim items such as clothing, food, and telephones. When the victim entered high school, Alvarez began making inappropriate requests of the victim, including performing sexual acts in front of him, as well as requesting the victim to send naked pictures and videos of a sexual nature. Alvarez and the victim did perform sexual acts with each other on several occasions.

It was also revealed during the course of the investigation that Alvarez solicited a friend of the victim, another juvenile, to send sexual pictures and video as well.     

At sentencing, Assistant State’s Attorney Sarah Freeman told the judge, “The exploitation went on for two years before the actual act. – There is too much risk here. There is too much manipulation by the defendant. This was predatory in nature. This was not an isolated incident. He was in a position of trust. Parents entrusted their kids to the community pool to have fun – not for a lifeguard to be taking advantage and grooming them. [The State believes] this is an above guidelines case.”

Before sentencing the defendant above the Maryland Sentencing Guidelines, Judge West said, “If you have children and send them to public places – and abuse happens – the community as a whole is let down. The community as a whole is damaged.”

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