Sex offender accused of assaulting child in Westville, New Jersey

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Sex offender accused of assaulting girl in Westville, NJ. Nora Muchanic reports during Action News at 4pm on April 24. (WPVI)

A convicted sex offender from North Carolina, and his girlfriend, are accused of committing a heinous crime against a child in Gloucester County, New Jersey.

Gabriel Torres, 42, has been charged with aggravated sexual assault. His girlfriend, 51-year-old Mary Giannone, is charged with sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

The assault of the girl, said to be under 13 years old, allegedly happened on a small, dead-end street off Route 47 in the Westville section of Deptford Township.
Investigators say it all happened between October 2015 and December 2016.

Court documents allege Torres used whips and a necktie as forms of sexual punishment, and that the girl was forced to play spin the bottle.

"That's horrible. I couldn't imagine any kid going through that. It's terrible because I have kids of my own I tried to keep them away from anything like that," said Robin Hardy of Westville.

"I wish I knew, I could have helped her, you know? Like that's crazy that it's so close to home. I don't like that at all," said Dawn Smith of Westville.

Torres is a registered sex offender in the state of North Carolina after a 2010 conviction on child pornography charges.

But even though he's living in Westville, he's not listed on New Jersey's sex offender registry.

A spokesman for the Gloucester County prosecutor's office wouldn't elaborate, but said certain out-of-state crimes do not trigger registration under New Jersey's Megan's Law.

Mary Giannone worked as a medical assistant at Advocare Marlton Pediatrics on Route 73. The CEO of Advocare tells Action News Giannone was fired in February for reasons unrelated to this case.

Action News was turned away at the couple's door, with the person who answered simply saying "Go away."

The couple faces a detention hearing on Wednesday. Until then they are being held in the Salem County Jail.

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Related Topics:
newsnew jersey newschild sex assaultsex assaultDeptford Township
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