Scranton, Pa

German Man Accused of Traveling to Pennsylvania to Meet 15-year-old Girl for Sex

Posted: March 28, 2024

On March 9, 2024, Erik Weidling, 20, was arrested and charged in Lancaster County for his alleged involvement with a 15 year-old girl. His 16 charges include two counts of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse (IDSI) – person less than 16 years age, four counts of unlawful contact with minor – sexual offense, three counts of statutory sexual assault: 4-8 years older, two counts of aggravated indecent assault – comp less than 16, four counts of corruption of minors – defendant age 18 or over, and one count of criminal use of communication facility. Weidling is being held in Lancaster County Prison after failing to post the $750,000 bail. His hearing is scheduled for April 9.

Court documents state that Weilding, who is from Germany, got his passport in early February to come to the United States to meet his ‘online girlfriend’, a teenage girl from Lancaster County. The documents further allege that Weidling knew she was only 15, and he traveled from Germany to Lancaster County to have sex with her. He planned to return to Germany on March 9, 2024 the date of his arrest.

Weidling allegedly knew the girl’s schedule and her mother’s work schedule and visited the girl only after her mother left for work. Over the course of one week, Weidling allegedly engaged in sexual activities with the minor on four separate occasions.

According to ECPAT International, a non-profit with the goal of ending sexual exploitation of children, the age of sexual consent in Germany is 14. However, the Pennsylvania Coalition to Advance Respect (PCAR) states that “age and experience create a power imbalance that makes it impossible for the younger person to freely consent. In Pennsylvania. . ., a teen between ages 13 and 15 cannot consent to sexual activity with a person who is four or more years older than them.”

The CSE Institute commends diligence of the law enforcement for their efforts in investigating and arresting Weidling. Law enforcement must remain vigilant and dedicated to protecting the youth in their communities by conducting investigations that target child sexual abuse. Often, predators find their victims by expressing a shared interest online and making themselves indispensable as trusted mentors or friends.  Parents should be aware of what their children are doing online and report any adults they see attempting to have suspect communications.

The CSE Institute will continue to provide updates on this matter.

All views expressed herein are personal to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law or of Villanova University. 

Category: News

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