Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, L.L.C.

Pennsylvania boy escapes alleged sex abuser at YMCA

Parents cannot be with children during every moment of the day. The older a child becomes, the more freedom a son or daughter usually has to be away from adult supervision. Sexual predators often monitor children's activities and wait for opportunities to isolate them.


Pennsylvania authorities were called to a Butler County recreation facility in late June where an alleged criminal act took place. A 12-year-old boy said he was the sexual abuse victim of a man who tried to rape him in a YMCA bathroom.


Police reports said a 35-year-old man used a knife to threaten the child while dragging him to a rest room. The child said he screamed as the attacker started to remove his clothes. The cries drew the attention of patrons. The man attempted to escape but was restrained by rescuers.


The Butler man was jailed on charges of attempted indecent assault, attempted aggravated assault and attempted rape. The defendant remained behind bars because he was not able to meet a $150,000 bond requirement.


The YMCA's response seemed to create distance from liability. Officials released a statement that stated the facility acted quickly and properly when the abuse allegation became known. No other comments were made other than to reaffirm the YMCA's long-standing philosophy of promoting the wellbeing of families.


A man who said he lived near the defendant felt "shocked" by the arrest. The neighbor said the defendant "didn't seem like that kind of person," as if child sexual abusers shared overtly visible traits.


The boy may have been without adult supervision for a matter of minutes before the alleged attacker took advantage of the situation. The YMCA could be held accountable if an attorney can show that the facility disregarded the safety of its guests. Not doing something to prevent acts of harm, like failing to screen club members or monitor a business environment, can constitute negligence.

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Source:, "Man Charged With Attempted Rape Of Child At Butler Co. YMCA" No author given, Jul. 01, 2013


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