Convicted sex offender charged with trying to lure teen girl into car

Abbot Dinoto
Abbot Dinoto

New London — A 69-year-old city man who spent 20 years in prison for molesting young girls in the 1980s was arrested again on Thursday after he allegedly tried to lure a 15-year-old girl into his vehicle.

Police charged Abbot DiNoto, also known as John Salvatore DiNoto Jr., of 44 Orchard St., No. 1, with criminal attempt to commit risk of injury to a minor and second-degree breach of peace.

At 2:46 p.m., police said, the teenage girl was walking home from school in the area of Bank Street and Braemer Place when DiNoto stopped his car so she could cross the street. The girl told police DiNoto pulled up beside her and began to honk his horn. He then allegedly rolled down his window, asked if she wanted a ride home and motioned for her to get into his vehicle.

Police said DiNoto drove away quickly after the girl yelled at him to leave her alone. The girl reported the incident to her father, who in turn called police. Police said the girl provided a description of the vehicle and its license plate number and said the same man had offered her a ride several weeks prior to Thursday’s incident.

Police say DiNoto fits the description of a man involved in similar incidents reported in September in New London and Waterford. The investigation into those incidents continues, and more charges are possible, Deputy Chief Peter Reichard said.

DiNoto is listed on the state’s sexual offender registry and remains on strict probation, having been sentenced to an additional nine months in prison in 2011 for a series of probation violations after his release from prison in 2009.

Less than a year after his release, a search of DiNoto’s apartment by probation officials turned up sexually explicit materials. Two months later, though conditions of his probation mandated a 9 p.m. curfew, he was stopped by police at 4:05 a.m. with a prostitute in his vehicle.

Among other incidents reported by probation in 2011 were his visits to Ocean Beach and Harkness Memorial State Park in 2010, places from which he is banned because they are places where children congregate. At one point, he told his probation officer that while at his counselor’s office, he ran into one of the victims from the sexual assault case and gave her a big hug and a kiss, according to court records. He is also banned from having any contact with his victims.

His original convictions stem from the rape of a 12-year-old girl on a boat at the Niantic marina and the sexual assault of another victim on multiple occasions and in several local towns.

He was convicted of multiple counts of both first-degree sexual assault and second-degree sexual assault of a minor in 1991, court records show.

Police said DiNoto is being held in lieu of a $100,000 bond pending an appearance in New London Superior Court.

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