Local News

Cary 'Santa' pleads guilty to child sex charges

Posted September 28, 2012 8:38 p.m. EDT

— A Cary man who played Santa Claus at area malls has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from accusations that he solicited a 15-year-old girl over the Internet for sex.

John Thomas Peters, 70, of 113 Crestpoint Court, was arrested in January on several charges after police picked him up at a fast-food restaurant in Apex, where he had planned to meet a teen.

Peters pleaded guilty Friday to second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor and soliciting a child by computer.

He was sentenced to 20 to 36 months in prison and must register as a sex offender when he's released.

His prison sentence is expected to begin Oct. 5.

Peters was arrested again in March on accusations that he also met a teen whom he found on Facebook and met her.

Court documents allege that Peters referred to himself as an amateur photographer looking for models.

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