Child advocates putting pressure on gaming panel

Attorney Carmen Durso

A children’s advocacy group is calling on the interim executive director of the newly formed Massachusetts Gaming Commission to reveal details about a settlement he reached with the family of a child he was accused of abusing.

“We believe the presumption of … truthfulness of the alleged child victim should be equally considered,” said Jetta Bernier of Massachusetts Citizens for Children.

Stan McGee, 43, was accused of assaulting a 15-year-old boy in a steam room in Florida in 2007. However, prosecutors decided there was not enough evidence to charge him with a crime.

The Globe reported that Gaming Commission Chairman Stephen Crosby said he conducted no investigation and concluded that McGee could be hired based on news reports that prosecutors did not press charges.

A spokeswoman for the commission said yesterday that McGee and Crosby would not comment on the issue.

Child advocates said the state and commission should look into the allegations.

“An individual who is a defendant in a criminal case is entitled to the presumption of innocence. This is not a criminal case,” said Carmen Durso, an attorney who has represented child sexual abuse victims. “No public agency should hire an individual with a credible allegation of sex abuse rendered against him.”

McGee eventually settled a civil claim brought by the teen’s family. Durso said if the details of the settlement were released, the amount of payment would indicate the accuracy of the teen’s accusation.

Timing questioned

During the time of the accusation, McGee worked as an assistant secretary for policy and planning in
Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration.
   
After the Florida prosecutor decided to not press charges, McGee returned to work.

When asked by a reporter why they didn’t raise this issue then, Bernier and Durso said the issue wasn’t on their radar.



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