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Man Accused of Sexually Assaulting Women with Autism

A 72 year old man is accused of sexually assaulting a woman with autism on multiple occasions while she was at work.

The victim is 24 years old but her father says her mental capacity is more like that of a 10-12 year old. The abuse happened while she was an employee at the Marcus Ridge Cinema in New Berlin. Surveillance video shows Humberto Paniagua, 72, groping and kissing the victim while she was working.

According to the criminal complaint, Paniagua would drive more than an hour from home to go to the theater. Sometimes the abuse happened during a movie while people were around. It also happened in the open near concessions.

The victim told police Paniagua had told her not to tell anyone.

Eventually an employee saw it happen and asked him to leave, then reported it to police.

The movie theater has responded and released a statement saying in part, “This was truly an unfortunate incident and we fully cooperated with law enforcement. The safety and security of our associates and guests is our top priority and we appreciate our associate manager’s quick response and handling of this incident.”

The theater says the Paniagua has been banned from the theater.

Police arrested Peniagua but released him. Now he’s on the run. A warrant has been issued for his arrest. 

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