A former youth basketball coach was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison Tuesday (February 18) in White Plains, N.Y. after pleading guilty to three counts of predatory sexual assault of a child.
Richard Dinizo, 59, tricked three elementary schoolgirls into performing sexual acts on camera, later blaming his behavior on Chinese nutritional supplements that he claims increased his libido.
Lohud.com reported on the Dinizo case, highlighting the harrowing details of the case. Although Dinizo never coached the girls, two 7-year-olds and a 10-year-old, he managed to get access to them after meeting the girls at his daughter's birthday party. Lohud.com has more.
Prosecutors said that Dinizo, who coached girls basketball for nearly two decades, convinced the girls to perform sex acts for more than two years, at times filming them with multiple cameras. Dinizo met some of them through his daughter, including at his young daughter's birthday party.
None of the victims — two 7-year-olds and a 10-year-old — were players that Dinizo coached. Officials said he convinced the girls they were playing a “tasting game” at his home, having them wear a mask that covered their eyes and prevented them from being aware of the sex acts.
Dinizo is still facing federal child pornography charges, and has lost everything in the wake of his crimes coming to light. According to prosecutors, Dinizo's family, including his wife and daughter, are no longer in contact with him.
Naturally, Dinizo's lawyer gamely tried to defend his client, although the explanation falls under the “he needs more people” category.
“I'm still puzzled by this short period of bizarre behavior,” Joseph Abinanti said. “Some demon must have gotten into his brain or his world.”
At least he got the demon part right.
Photo: Photo11: Provided to The Westchester County, N.Y., Journal News