Former Mullins coach sentenced to 5 years probation

MARION COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - A former football coach out of the Pee Dee will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. Prosecutors say he showed pictures of his genitals to a  female student and told another minor to send him a video of her performing sexual acts - but the victims' families ask the judge not to give him jail time.

Gregory Hill, 29, of Latta, pled guilty to nine counts of disseminating harmful material to minors in both Dillon and Marion counties as well as contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

In court, prosecutors pointed out Hill had no physical contact with the victims and no previous criminal history.

Judge William Seals sentenced Hill to five years probation with no contact with the victims on their families. He will also have to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.

Seals says the sympathy from the victims' families played a large role in his plea sentencing.

During the hearing, the judge heard a statement from the victims' families stating they didn't want Hill to face jail time or go through a trial. They felt having to register as a sex offender and probation were enough punishment.

"The families wanted probation, there's an emotional cost if they were to go through a trial," said Solicitor Ed Clements.

Investigators say Hill was arrested in 2010 for reportedly, inviting a 16 year-old female student into his office at Mullins High School, where they say he showed her nine pictures of his genitals on his cell phone.

He was arrested again in 2011 after investigators say he met a minor female at a church group in Dillon years back.

Officials say the girl sent Hill a video of her performing sexual acts and say Hill told the girl she could visit his home when she turned 18.

"Two places you expect your children to be safe is church and school, which is where these charges originated," said Clements.

Hill was in court Friday morning on both charges. Hill's attorney said he had been in counseling since the incidents.

"It was like he was setting himself up for once they became of age which is somewhat bizarre and I've never seen anything like that before but it probably saved him some serious charges," said Deputy Solicitor Kernard Redmond. "It's like he knew the lines and where not to cross the lines but what he did is still a violation of the law."

In court, Hill briefly apologized to his family and the victims. His attorney says Hill has been seeing a counselor since the incidents.

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