Thursday, January 13, 2011
Brooklyn pizza maker gets five years in jail for kiddie porn after judge tries to reduce sentence
Federal Judge Jack Weinstein reluctantly sentenced a Brooklyn pizza maker who was the victim of sexual abuse as a child himself to five years in prison for possessing of kiddie porn.
The judge, who previously tried to sentence defendant Peter Polizzi to a year and a day, noted that he had been ordered by the U.S. Court of Appeals to hand out the mandatory sentenced.
Polizzi, the owner of a pizzeria in Bushwick and father of five children, declined to appeal the tougher sentence but went out swinging at the government.
"My childhood life was taken from me," Polizzi said. "Every single day of my life I ask myself, 'Why did this have to happen to me?'"
Polizzi, 56, testified in graphic detail at his trial how he was raped as a child in Sicly by an uncle, a family friend and two police officers.
"I'm not an abuser, I'm a victim!" he cried. "You want to put me jail, fine, but I'm not a criminal."
The jury rejected Polizzi's insanity defense built upon the argument that he was searching for himself among the sexually abused children he voraciously viewed on his home computer.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Allen Bode accused Polizzi of crying crocodile tears for his sorry self. "He's hiding behind real victims of sex abuse," Bode said. "Mr. Polizzi should be ashamed of himself."
The prosecutor noted that Mr. Polizzi wouldn't find himself among the many images of "little girls" he trolled through in his monthly purchases of the illegal porn.
Polizzi's wife Anna, who is suffering from cancer, thanked Weinstein for understanding that "not everything is black and white.
The judge got in one last poke at the feds, though -- he allowed Polizzi to self-surrender to prison over the prosecutor's objection.