From staff and wire reports
While the Aaron Family JCC prepared to send more than 100 Dallas area athletes, coaches and delegation heads to Birmingham for the Maccabi Games, news broke July 27 that the organization is facing a lawsuit.
A mother has sued the Aaron Family JCC of Dallas alleging that a fitness center employee molested and sexually assaulted her then-14-year-old daughter over a period of several months.
The lawsuit, which was filed July 14, also names the Jewish community center’s CEO, Artie Allen, and the Jewish Community Center Association of North America, the Dallas Morning News reported.
The mother and daughter are referred to as Jane Doe I and Jane Doe II. The original petition can be read at http://bit.ly/2u0SJrC.
The suit alleges that when the mother tried to talk to Allen about the fact that the employee was harassing her daughter and rumors they may be dating — before she knew about the molesting and rape. Allen allegedly responded that “it takes two to tango.”
According to the lawsuit, the assaults began in 2014, when the unnamed employee began stalking the girl, when he trained her at the JCC gym. The lawsuit charged that the employee also molested, sexually assaulted, threatened and raped her at the center and off-site.
The lawsuit said that two other girls told JCC staff members that the employee had sexually harassed them. It said the JCC neither launched an investigation nor disciplined the employee.
Allen was unable to comment about the lawsuit. However, Jeff Nicodemis, JCC counsel, sent the following statement to the TJP:
“The JCC is aware of the lawsuit. It takes the matter seriously and will respond accordingly. The JCC is committed to understanding the full and relevant story by a thorough investigation. With a pending lawsuit, the JCC has no further comment at this time.”