Former Gym Owner Sentenced On Perjury Charge In Connection With Child Rape Case

WOBURN – A former gym owner has been sentenced after being found guilty of perjury in connection with his sworn Grand Jury testimony in a case involving a gymnastics coach who raped and assaulted former gymnasts, Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone informed the public today.

Stephen DiTullio, 57, of Littleton, was found guilty yesterday by a jury in Middlesex Superior Court in Woburn on a charge of perjury. Today, Middlesex Superior Court Judge S. Jane Haggerty sentenced the defendant to two years in Billerica House of Corrections, with one year to serve and the balance suspended for two years with the conditions that he has no direct or indirect contact with any witnesses, complete 300 hours of community service, and does not have any contact with children under the age of 18.

“This defendant has been found guilty for providing false statements during an investigation that involved the rape and sexual assaults on young women by their Coach,” District Attorney Leone said. “DiTullio and Infante both engaged in egregious violations of trust, and troubling exhibitions of power and control over vulnerable victims. We take such deliberate tampering with the pursuit of justice very seriously and I commend the jury for their just verdict today and the court for ensuring that this defendant serves time in jail and has no contact with children. I also thank the courageous victims in this case for coming forward.”

According to authorities, the defendant previously owned The Gym Nest in Acton, which was relocated to Stow and renamed to Five Star Gymnastics. In 2007, three victims reported that they were either sexually assaulted or raped during their teenage years in the early 1990’s by DiTullio’s co-defendant and good friend, Steven Infante. Infante was a gymnastics coach in both Massachusetts and Connecticut and was the President of Five Star Gymnastics Overnight Camp, which had been held in Springfield, as well as the former owner of Olympia Gymnastics in Brookfield, Connecticut. The defendant participated in the operation of the overnight camp and often held competitions between the gymnasts he and Infante each coached.

Victim A, age 13 at the time, attended The Gym Nest, during the summer of 1990. Infante, aged 34 at the time, was a counselor at the camp. It was at this time that Infante began a pattern of “grooming” this victim and others to become more comfortable with his approaches and excessive physical contact. This grooming over a period of time included gifts, alcohol, excessive flirtatious actions, sexual innuendo, and inappropriate sexual touchings that the defendant and others made a part of camp rituals.

The next summer, Victim A attended Five Star Gymnastics Camp, owned by the defendant and another owner. During the camp, escalating physical contact occurred between Infante and the victim, along with continued grooming. The defendant and Infante invited Victim A and other gymnasts to a sleepover which was held at DiTullio’s home in Littleton. It was at this party that Infante committed his first charged crime (indecent assault and battery on a victim over 14) against Victim A. During the course of the evening, Infante committed indecent assault and battery by forcing himself on her sexually. The victim was 14 years-old. Infante was 35 years-old.

The second charged crime against Infante, rape of a child, occurred in April of 1992. Victim A was attending a gymnastics meet in Northborough but was not competing. Infante and the victim traveled from the meet to the home of the defendant’s in Littleton where Infante raped the victim in the defendant’s bed. Infante informed DiTullio of what had taken place in his bedroom. The victim was 15 years-old. Infante was 36 years-old.

Infante was charged with a third crime, rape, against Victim A which occurred between the fall of 1992 and the fall of 1994, when Infante repeatedly raped Victim A.

A second victim, a then 16-year-old gymnast who was coached by Infante in Connecticut, was also sexually assaulted by him. The assault occurred in 1993 at the defendants’s home in Littleton during another sleepover that was attended by multiple gymnasts. Infante was charged with indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 in connection with this incident.

During the investigation into Infante’s criminal actions, multiple witnesses provided testimony to the Grand Jury that both the defendant and Infante provided alcohol to junior counselors at the summer camp sessions, and were present when junior counselors consumed alcohol. The defendant testified under oath to the Grand Jury and denied having any knowledge of junior counselors drinking alcohol at camp in the early 1990’s, and stated that such drinking never occurred in his presence.

Infante was found guilty on May 26, 2010 by a Middlesex Superior Court jury on charges of rape, rape of a child (3 counts) and indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 (2 counts). Middlesex Superior Court Judge Bruce R. Henry sentenced Infante to eight to ten years in state prison followed by five years probation with the conditions that the defendant has no direct or indirect contact with any witnesses, no contact with any persons under the age of 18 and is required to register as a sex offender.

The prosecutors assigned to the case are Assistant District Attorney Tom O’Reilly and Assistant District Attorney Deborah Bercovitch. The victim witness advocate is Theresa Corcoran. The interview specialist is Margaret Leavitt. This case was investigated by Acton Police and Massachusetts State Police assigned to the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office.