A Lancaster woman will serve up to a decade in prison for attempted sex abuse of three children in 2015.
Shelly Mattson pleaded no contest in March to seven charges, including three felonies, regarding crimes against the children, ages 3, 6, and 12.
On three separate occasions, Mattson tried to solicit sexual contact with the children – two of them ran off; a relative intervened in the other incident.
Lancaster County Judge Merrill Spahn Jr. recently ordered the 42-year-old Mattson serve 3½ to 10 years in prison, calling the crimes every parent’s "worst nightmare."
Assistant District Attorney Fritz Haverstick, lead prosecutor, stressed that the crimes happened over a two-week period at three separate locations in Lancaster city. There was no physical contact with the children.
On July 25, 2015, Mattson tried to touch a 6-year-old boy in a store on South Queen Street. The boy fled and told his mother.
On Aug. 3, 2015, on West Chestnut Street, Mattson tried to entice a 3-year-old girl with a teddy bear and reached for the child’s leg. A relative intervened.
On Aug. 11, 2015, Mattson made a sexual comment to a 12-year-old boy on West Orange Street. The boy fled.
In all, Mattson, formerly of South Queen Street, pleaded to felony counts of unlawful contact (2 counts) and solicitation of sexual assault, and misdemeanor counts of corruption of minors (2 counts), attempted indecent assault, and solicitation of indecent assault.
Lancaster city police Detective Aaron Harnish filed charges.
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