Former 'Cheer' Star Jerry Harris Was Just Sentenced To 12 Years For Sex Crimes

He apologized to the victims at the hearing.

Global Staff Writer
Jerry Harris.

Jerry Harris.

Jerry Harris, the former breakout star of Netflix's docu-series Cheer, has been sentenced to a dozen years in U.S. prison for sex crimes related to children.

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Harris, 22, was sentenced to 12 years behind bars and another eight years of court-supervised release on Wednesday, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

A judge in Chicago handed down the sentence after Harris previously pleaded guilty to one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of travelling with the intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct.

He'd previously pleaded not guilty to seven charges related to the case but reached a plea deal to get the other charges dropped, the New York Times reports.

As part of the plea deal, Harris admitted that he asked for and received pornographic images from two underage boys and that he travelled to Florida with the intent to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor. He also admitted to sending another boy $2,000 in exchange for photos and videos, the DOJ stated.

Prosecutors had asked for a 15-year sentence at the hearing, arguing that the Netflix star had used his celebrity status to target victims, the Times reports.

Harris apologized to the victim in a statement before his sentencing, NPR reports.

"I'm not an evil person. I'm still learning who I am and what my purpose is," he said, per NPR.

"I am deeply sorry for all the trauma my abuse has caused you. I pray deep down that your suffering comes to an end."

Harris has been in federal custody since he was arrested in September 2020, just nine months since the release of Cheer.

Netflix has since scrubbed him from much of its marketing for the series.

Cata Balzano
Global Staff Writer