OSWEGO, NY – The founder of Fight Science, a martial arts studio on South First Street in Fulton, was sentenced today (Dec. 21) to 2 to 3 years in state prison for having sexual contact with two of his students.
Tommy Merritt, 38, of Fulton pleaded guilty last month to two counts of criminal sex act, both felonies.
When he is released from prison, Merritt will be placed on seven years of post-release supervision, have a 10-year order of protection placed against him for the two victims and will also have to register as a sex offender.
In November, Merritt admitted he had sexual contact with two boys, one less than 15 years old and the other less than 13 at the time, on two separate occasions in 2005 and 2007.
The mother of one victim spoke in court this morning and said she didn’t think the sentence was harsh enough.
“There are two different victims here,” Oswego County Assistant District Attorney Gregory Oakes told Oswego County Today.com “We have to weigh the needs of both families. We could take care of everything all at once, or not everything.”
The other parents’ child is still a minor and still in the community, he explained.
“For the sake of that child, they said they would rather have the case resolved,” Oakes said. “Would we have liked to have the sentence more? Sure. But he did plea to the top counts and will be a part of the corrections system for 10 years after he gets out of state prison.”