Former Wisconsin gymnastics coach sentenced in federal child pornography case

A former Wisconsin gymnastics coach has been sentenced in federal court for sex abuse crimes involving minors. 

A Minnesota federal judge on Wednesday sentenced 50-year-old George Francis Deppa to 25 years in prison followed by a lifetime of supervised release. He pleaded guilty in June to one count of producing child pornography for using a 15-year-old to create images of his sexual abuse.

As part of the plea agreement, the former gymnastics coach also agreed to plead guilty in pending cases out of Douglas County, Wisconsin, and St. Louis County, Minnesota, involving at least five other minors. 

According to court records, Deppa had a pattern of isolating and drugging his victims. In St. Louis County, he was accused of allegedly giving a minor something to "help her sleep" before sexually assaulting her sometime between 2008 and 2009. He pleaded guilty to second-degree criminal sexual conduct for the crime. 

He also pleaded guilty to fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct for allegedly drugging and sexually assaulting a teenager sometime between 2010 and 2011. In exchange for his guilty pleas, St. Louis County prosecutors dropped two first-degree criminal sexual conduct charges in another alleged assault that took place over several years. 

Deppa's sentencing in St. Louis County is scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 14. 

According to court records, Wisconsin prosecutors offered Deppa a deal to plead guilty or plead no contest in two cases involving the sexual assault of a child.

Based on the investigation, authorities believe there may be additional victims. Anyone with information can contact the Minneapolis FBI at 218-722-3341.