In an effort to save himself from a lifetime behind bars, Bryan Lancaster testified Friday in his own defense.
The former Texas A&M University employee accused of child sex crimes has pleaded guilty to seven of the 109 charges he faces.
Investigators found thousands of pornographic pictures on his home computer and explicit videos he had taken of young girls.
Lancaster, 36, said Friday that he was terribly sorry for what he did.
"I felt very, very terrible," Lancaster testified. "I really can't explain the feeling. I felt very ashamed for those I've hurt. I've hurt several people and it has eaten me up. It's torn me to shreds."
Lancaster told jurors he had a troubled childhood. He testified he was molested as a child and exposed to pornography at an early age.
His three brothers have all been all been trouble with the law for drug related incidents. One, is currently serving prison time for aggravated sexual assault of a child. Lancaster said his father has also been in trouble with the law for child sex crimes.
Lancaster was arrested in the early '90's when he was accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a 14-year-old girl, while he was her youth pastor. He took a plea bargain in the case, and was convicted of public lewdness.
Lancaster testified he tried to turn his life around. He said he attended preaching school in Louisiana and then got his bachelors degree from Abilene Christian University. He moved with his wife to Bryan to pursue a PHD at Texas A&M.
However, his ex-wife testified things did not change completely.
She said she often found adult pornography on Lancaster's computer, and even found child pornography saved on disks.
Since Lancaster's arrest in January 2007, the two have divorced and he has had no contact with the couple's three children.
Friday, Lancaster spoke out to his victims.
"I wish there were words to say," Lancaster said. "I know that I've hurt those kids, their families in a big way. I have a lot of anger towards myself actually and I have to live with it."
Prosecutors asked Lancaster if he was still a threat to children, and he said yes.
Lancaster could face up to 100 years in prison, if convicted.
Prosecutors are expected to pursue the remaining 102 charges at a later date.
Testimony is expected to continue Monday in the 272nd District Court.
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