A former New Cumberland and Chester police officer has been indicted in connection with a sexting incident involving a 16-year-old girl last year.
Eric R. Maruca, 27, of New Cumberland was indicted by the Hancock County grand jury on Wednesday on one felony count of displaying obscene matter to a minor. Maruca originally was charged in October following an investigation by the Hancock County Sheriff's Department resulting from a complaint filed by the girl's mother.
At the time, Maruca was a patrolman with the Chester Police Department. He had joined the force in July after working eight years for the New Cumberland Police Department.
Maruca turned himself in on a felony warrant on Oct. 28, a week after being fired by Chester Council. The case has sat in Hancock County Magistrate Court since then.
"We could not have finalized the case in magistrate court," Hancock County Prosecutor Jim Davis said. "The only way I can pursue a felony charge is through the grand jury."
Maruca is accused of sending a nude picture of himself to the girl via cellphone in September. He struck up a relationship with the girl after a mutual friend suggested the girl was "in love" with him and was interested in a "three-way" sexual encounter, according to the original complaint.
The mutual friend - Amanda Myers, 30, of New Cumberland - also was indicted Wednesday on charges of use of a minor to produce obscene matter and use of a minor in filming sexually explicit conduct.
"(Myers) is alleged to have taken pictures (of the girl) and sent them via cellphone," Davis said.
According to the original complaint, the girl told sheriff's investigators that she had been coaxed into having the pictures taken - one of her exposed breasts and one of her genitals - and sending them to Maruca.
The grand jury returned another sex-related charge on Wednesday against Douglas E. Wells, 41, of Newell.
Wells faces one felony count of soliciting a minor via computer for allegedly asking a 15-year-old girl to send him a nude picture of herself. According to the original complaint, Wells befriended the girl on Facebook and allegedly made sexual overtures toward her.