EDEN, N.Y. (WIVB) – A former Eden High School wrestling coach learned his sentence in court Thursday. Justin Farrara has been free on his own recognizance, but learned he will be spending three years in prison and eight years on post-release supervision.
The 27-year-old pleaded guilty to rape for having sex with two different girls, ages 15 and 16. Investigators say Farrara is predator who likes underage girls and is at risk to re offend.
Farrara didn’t have a criminal record. There were no red flags in his background.
The father and mother of two teenage girls spoke in court about how Justin Farrara stole their innocence. The father said he looks at pictures of his 14-year-old daughter and wishes he could have protected the little girl in braces from the predator who pursued her. Adding, the relationship didn’t stop until Farrara was caught two years after it began. “He’s a creep, he’s a statutory rapist,” said Erie County District Attorney Frank Sedita.
The father was especially disgusted that Farrara blamed his daughter for the trouble he’s in. In court we learned on the day Farrara was originally supposed to plead guilty, but he didn’t show up for court. That day he was snapchatting his victim saying, “how could you do this to me, you ruined my life.”
Farrara’s mother apparently shared the same feelings in a letter she wrote to the court. “I think it’s troubling when she writes ‘I’m truly sorry for the girls’ parents, but they also have to understand they are ruining a wonderful young man’s life.’ The only person who ruined this young man’s life, was this young man,” said Sedita.
News 4 also heard for the mother of his other victim who is now in college. She called him predator, pedophile, pervert, and criminal. She revealed she found out about Farrara because her daughter said she was camping in Canada with friends, but the girl was really in Saratoga with Farrara. She drove five hours to pick up her daughter calling Farrara a coward for not being there to own up to his actions when she arrived. In closing the mother told Farrara “You’re here because of your actions and your choices. You are not the victim.”
Farrara kept it brief saying there were no words to describe what he’d done, and he hopes the victims can move forward.
One of Farrara’s victims sat in court with tears ran down her face as her father told the court how she showed bravery and saved other girls from becoming his victims.
Investigators and school officials described this as a wake up call for parents to keep track of who their teens see and socialize with. However, today’s technology makes that difficult.
New York State Police Investigator Chris Wysocki said, “Would see the girls walking through the halls. Would ask some of the students on the wrestling team who they were and would apparently make it a point to talk to them and get to know them, and eventually exchanged phone numbers and it just went on from there.”
Eden Superintendent Sandy Anzalone said, “He abused authority that we give teachers and coaches or anyone who works with students.”
Police were able to catch him thanks to a Twitter page where teens confess to different things, in this case prosecutors say they talked about their relationships with Farrera.