A Beaver County adult probation officer who also coached high school basketball has been charged with child pornography crimes.
Nicholas Lackovich has been under investigation for alleged dogfighting since August 2015, according to a news release from the Beaver County district attorney’s office. During the course of that investigation, police allegedly found child pornography.
Lackovich is also the head coach for the Aliquippa High School men's varsity basketball team and took the team to the state championships last year.
The charges stemmed after Pennsylvania State Police obtained search warrants for Lackovich's computers and cellphones while investigating dogfighting. The FBI provided technical expertise in searching the computers, and a child pornography image was discovered.
Federal and state search warrants were obtained specifically for child pornography, leading to the discovery of additional images, the district attorney’s office said.
Lackovich is charged with two felony counts of sexual abuse of children by knowingly possessing child pornography. One count is a third-degree felony, because it depicts child nudity. The other count is a second-degree felony, because it depicts forced sexual conduct by a minor, the district attorney’s office said.
The district attorney's office said Lackovich has been on administrative leave from the Beaver County Adult Probation Office as the result of the dogfighting investigation. Lackovich’s attorney said he will submit his retirement papers to Beaver County, and he will resign as Aliquippa’s basketball coach. He has already been on leave from his job as a probation office while the dogfighting investigation was underway.
Lackovich turned himself in to police Thursday, the day the criminal complaint was filed. Magistrate Joseph Shafer issued a $100,000 bond Thursday morning and prohibited Lackovich from any contact with minors.
Steve Colafella, Lackovich's attorney, said his client is free on bond and maintains his innocence.
"He is a good guy and we are going to fight this," Colafella said, adding that the investigation has been going on for a year and is "totally bogus. They found nothing."
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