Suit: City should have known about rec center molester - Albuquerque Journal

Suit: City should have known about rec center molester

SANTA FE — The father of a boy who was sexually assaulted in a shower at the Fort Marcy Recreation Complex is suing the man who was convicted of the crime, Santa Fe city government and unnamed employees at two city recreation centers.

Eric Knee, 71, was found guilty of two counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor under 13 after a second trial in May. He is currently in the Santa Fe County jail awaiting sentencing.

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Eric Knee

The father of one of the boys allegedly molested by Knee filed suit in Santa Fe District Court Monday. The father claims the city and workers should have known that Knee posed a threat to children before the 2015 molestation at Fort Marcy that led to Knee’s charges because of a similar incident at Salvador Perez Pool four years earlier.

The suit states the child, identified in the suit as NR, another boy and the other boy’s parent went to Fort Marcy on Dec. 12, 2015 and used the pool for about two hours. The boys then used the shower in the men’s locker room. Knee, who was also in the shower, improperly touched NR and asked NR to touch him, according to the suit. A criminal complaint says Knee inappropriately touched the other boy as well.

The suit says there was another incident with one or more children at the Salvador Perez Pool in 2011. Knee was banned from that complex after someone reported him to a pool employee, but, “it appears that no report was made to a supervisor, the City of Santa Fe or law enforcement,” the lawsuit says.

“In addition, it appears that employees of the City of Santa Fe failed to take reasonable and necessary steps to notify a supervisor of Knee’s dangerousness… to protect NR and other minors from Eric Knee, who continued to frequent pool facilities, owned and operated by the City of Santa Fe, and have continued contact with minor children between 2011 and 2015.”

Knee was indicted for perjury for lying under oath during his first trial in November 2016. City government spokesman Matt Ross said the city can’t comment on pending litigation.

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