PROVIDENCE - The state Supreme Court this week upheld a finding that a former assistant soccer coach at Chariho High School ranks as a sex offender at the highest risk to reoffend.
The high court ruled Wednesday that Superior Court Judge Netti C. Vogel properly found that Glen Matteson's classification as a Level III sex offender was appropriate given his position of authority over the teenager he solicited for photos and due to the number of illicit photos and videos he possessed: 970-plus.
Matteson, 61, had argued that the Rhode Island Sex Offender Board of Review's decision to categorize him high-risk was "unreasonable and arbitrary," as he never physically touched his victim and had been categorized as low risk using risk-assessment tools. The classification triggers public notice of Matteson's presence in the Richmond community, at 15 Riverview Drive.
A Superior Court magistrate upheld Matteson's classification, as did Vogel, prompting Matteson to seek Supreme Court review.
The high court emphasized in a decision written by Justice Erin Lynch Prata that the board is obligated to base its classification on the risk-assessment tools, in addition to external factors, including the fact that Matteson possessed more than 970 images and videos of child pornography, "including numerous depictions of sadistic and masochistic conduct and children who appear as young as 5 years old."
In addition, the court noted that Matteson failed to accept responsibility for some of his actions.
The Richmond police arrested Matteson in 2012 after the father of a 15-year-old player reported that Matteson had sent texts to his son that read, "I told you I was kinky," and "You might hurt for a couple days, after LOL."
A detective took the teenager's cellphone and exchanged a series of sexually explicit messages with Matteson, who requested nude photos of the boy.
The police charged Matteson with indecent solicitation of a child and possession of child pornography.
Matteson pleaded no contest to indecent solicitation and received a five-year suspended sentence in state court. He was ordered not to contact the teenager, to register as a sex offender, and undergo sex-offender counseling.
In addition, Matteson pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to receiving, possessing and distributing child pornography after state police discovered images of nude prepubescent males, some appearing as young as 5, engaged in sexual acts with men. He was sentenced to five years in prison. He was released from prison in July 2017 and remains under court oversight through 2027.
After his release, a probation officer with the state Sex Offender Notification Unit produced a report based on interviews in which Matteson reported that he collected child pornography because he was "looking for answers" about why he was sexually abused at 8 years old, court records show. He said he never intended to meet with the 15-year-old he had texted.
This article originally appeared on The Providence Journal: Former Chariho High coach sex offender status affirmed by court