Mental health worker charged with molesting teen

WEST PARIS — A 65-year-old man who identified himself as a mental health worker was arrested last week on a charge of sexually molesting a teenage boy at a rest area beside Route 26.

Ronald Lauren Theriault of  25 Morey Avenue in Mechanic Falls was charged with misdemeanor unlawful sexual contact on April 14. He was released from the Oxford County Jail on $500 bail about two-and-a-half hours after he was admitted.

Trooper Greg Tirado of the Maine State Police said Theriault is accused of touching the genitals and buttocks of a 17-year-old boy who was urinating in the woods at the Snow Falls rest area beside Route 26. Tirado said the boy borrowed a cell phone and called the police immediately after the incident, giving a description and license plate number of Theriault's vehicle. Tirado pulled the vehicle over in Paris and arrested Theriault.

According to booking information at the jail, Theriault has worked for two years as an adult case manager at Tri-County Mental Health Services' office on Pottle Road in Oxford. The company provides a number of services to adults and children suffering from serious mental illnesses and has offices in Androscoggin, Franklin, Oxford, and northern Cumberland counties.

Tirado said the incident occurred in the evening and was unrelated to Theriault's employment.

“Mr. Theriault was there by himself, and the only other person who was there was the victim,” Tirado said.

Diane Taglienti, human resources director with Tri-County Mental Health Services, said she was unable to confirm whether Theriault worked with the company due to confidentiality reasons. She said employees are subject to an extensive background check, including criminal history, driving records, verification of degrees and professional licenses, adverse or disciplinary license actions, and a state and national sex offender registry check.

Executive Director Chris Copeland said any employee accused of sexual misconduct would not be permitted to continue working with clients.

“Our contract doesn't allow us to employ people who have been convicted of similar offenses,” Copeland said.

Theriault is scheduled to appear in 11th District Court in Paris on June 17.

mlangeveld@sunjournal.com

Submitted Photo

Ronald Lauren Theriault

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Comments

Deborah Berube's picture

I wish people would stop

I wish people would stop equating homosexuality with pedophilia.  Pedophiles prefer children for sex partners.  Not so with gay or straight people; they are adults consenting to sexual relationships.  There is so much homo-phobia/hatred in this state, it's sickening.

Marvin Coker's picture

Now that I think of it

Now that I think of it, I may be wrong but I have heard a lot about gay men meeting gay men in these rest areas to have sex, they usually meet in the restrooms.

This ronald guy could have thought this 17 year old kid was there for that same reason and made a move on him.

In no way am I trying to put down gays, so please don't think I am.

Jean Eichhorn's picture

cell phone

Just a query, if noone else was there from whom did he borrow a cell phone. That's a pretty isolated spot. It's not like you can "run next door" to a store or something.  I too hate to read the implied accusation that all homosexual people are child molesters. In fact, there are many fewer, per capita, in the gay community than there are in the heterosexual community. Child molestors are a type unto themselves, and they can be "the boy next door".

Susan Hutchins's picture

Not to be picky...

...but, actually, there is a restaurant (The River Restaurant) and cabins in proximity of Snow Falls.

But, I totally agree with you on the facts> BY FAR, pedophiles are heterosexual males.

Marvin Coker's picture

I'm glad

I'm glad the young man got away from this pervert, this person is a monster he could have killed that kid.

He needs to be put away for a long long time and let someone prey on him.

Audrey Alcala's picture

What?

Let's not turn this into a same sex marital issue! Don't start labeling all gay people as child molesters because that is so damn far from true!!

 's picture

Mental Health Worker?

The trooper says that this guy was not working?  Does that make this event any lesser vile?  And these people want to be able to marry eachother?  If he is guilty, he should be put in the same cell as yhat yahoo that raped that child and Mother!  They deserve each other!

RONALD RIML's picture

Child molesters want to Marry each other??

The Pope won't let them......

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