Juniata County Teacher Assistant, Coach pleads guilty to child pornography charges

HARRISBURG, Pennsylvania (WHTM) — Juniata County teacher assistant and track coach has pleaded guilty to charges of possession of child pornography and serving alcohol to minors, Acting Attorney General Michele Henry announced Wednesday, January 18.

According to the AG’s office, Peyton Harris, who was arrested in June of 2022, was hired as a teacher’s assistant at Juniata High School and Newport High School and served as the assistant head coach for Juniata High School’s track team during the 2021-2022 school year.

The AG’s office stated that the investigation found that Harris hosted a party at his home that allowed minors to consume alcohol using a false ID. During the party, the AG’s office said Harris took photos and videos of minors engaging in sexual activity.

According to the attorney general’s office, Harris was 20 years old at the time of his arrest.

Harris pleaded guilty to charges of child sexual abuse – child pornography, and serving alcohol to a minor.

“Parents and students have trusted Mr Harris to make a positive impact and empower young people in their community,” said Acting Attorney General Michelle Henry. He violated that trust when he exploited and endangered minors. Today’s guilty plea is a reminder that this office will continue to work to protect young people and hold accountable those who harm them.”

The prosecutor’s office has not yet announced the terms of the sentence.

This case is being tried by Assistant Deputy District Attorney Daniel Day.