Former police chief in PA to serve 9-23 months in prison after guilty plea related to undercover child sex sting

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Michael Diebold

HARRISBURG — A former police chief in Armstrong County will serve between nine and 23 months in prison and three years probation for soliciting sexual acts from an undercover agent posing as a 14-year-old girl online in January, Attorney General Josh Shapiro announced Wednesday.

Michael Diebold, 41, pleaded guilty to two counts of statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor and criminal use of a communication facility, court documents show.

Diebold, who served as Leechburg’s police chief, sent inappropriate pictures to the individual he thought to be a teenage girl on multiple occasions. He then made plans to meet up with the girl, and upon arrival at the designated location in Westmoreland County, Diebold was apprehended.

“This case is particularly heinous because the perpetrator is a public official, sworn to serve and protect the community,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “We have a zero tolerance policy for the sexual abuse of children and my office will prosecute any offender to the fullest extent of the law, no matter who they are.”

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