SOMERSET COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — A Windber man faces felony charges after police were told he sexually assaulted a young teen beginning in 2019.

Erik Blaine Ribblett, 46, is being accused of sexually assaulting a teenager after the girl’s mother came forward to Windber police regarding pornographic photos and inappropriate messages that were being sent to her daughter, according to court documents. The mother said she confronted Ribblett, and he claimed he was drunk and that it wouldn’t happen again. However, the messages continued, police said.

In an October 2021 interview, the teen told police that this started sometime in 2019. She said he would message her via Snapchat, and they exchanged inappropriate photos and videos of each other. Eventually, Ribblett would pick her up and they would have oral sex. The teen said this didn’t stop until July 2021.

Ribblett told the teen that what he was doing was technically statutory rape, police noted from her interview. He told her he would go to jail and his life would be ruined if authorities found out.

Ribblett was arraigned Friday on a slew of felony sexual assault-related charges involving a person less than 16. He remains free after an unsecured bail of $75,000 was set.

His preliminary hearing is slated for Feb. 9.

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