The former Bedford County public defender pleaded guilty Thursday to 24 charges in two criminal complaints that he molested a young girl and downloaded child pornography from a county-owned computer.

Bradley Bingaman, 32, now of the Philadelphia area, pleaded guilty to one count each of rape of a child and attempted rape of a child and 22 counts of possession of child porn.

A plea bargain hammered out between Bedford County District Attorney William Higgins and defense attorney Shawn Cohen includes a sentence of 14 to 28 years in a state prison.

Bingaman will be sentenced June 2 following a pre-sentencing investigation and an evaluation by the state sexual offender assessment board to determine whether he is a sexually violent predator.

Bingaman defended indigent criminals in the county for three years until his abrupt resignation a year ago. He initially was charged with more than 300 counts of molestation and later with more than 400 counts of possession of pornography.

Higgins said the 22 counts of child porn reflect the number of times Bingaman downloaded photos.

After the hearing in front of Judge Thomas Ling, Bingaman, who has been free on bail since his April arrest, was taken to the Bedford County Jail.

Higgins said the victim, now 13, and her mother were told of the guilty plea and agreed to the terms. The mother was in the courtroom Thursday; the victim was not present.

The plea bargain guarantees significant incarceration for Bingaman and allows the girl to avoid the trauma of testifying, Higgins said.

“The defendant acknowledged what he did was wrong,” Higgins said. “We think it’s a fair and appropriate resolution consistent with other defendants in similar cases.”

The molestation started when the girl was 7 and ended when she was 11.

The crimes occurred at homes in Schellsburg and Bedford Township.

Bingaman downloaded the pornography at various times between 2003 and last year.

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