The Pennsylvania Superior Court rejected a Lancaster man's appeal that claimed he was wrongly convicted after police used footage to charge him for soliciting sex from a vigilante posing as a teenage girl.
Thomas H. Wise, 37, was convicted with statutory sexual assault and four other felonies after he sent lewd texts and attempted to meet a 15-year-old girl at Lancaster's Binns Park on July 19, 2018.
When Wise arrived at Binns Park, Justin Perry, a self-described vigilante, was there instead. Perry, who had posed as the 15-year-old girl, recorded the meeting on Facebook Live.
Lancaster city police used Perry's video to charge and convict Wise. He was sentenced to time served, about nine months on parole and five years of probation, LNP | LancasterOnline reported.
Almost two years later, Wise claimed Lancaster city police violated Pennsylvania's Wiretap Act by using Perry's footage as evidence, court documents said.
According to an opinion by Senior Judge John L. Musmanno filed on April 1, 2020, the Superior Court rejected Wise's claim and stated that because Perry was clearly filming the conversation, the Wiretap Act was not violated.