HUTCHINSON, Kan. (AP) — A former police officer was charged Thursday in a series of sexual crimes that occurred between 2012 and 2018 while he worked for the Hutchinson, Kansas, police department, authorities said.
Todd Allen, 51, who was a Hutchinson police officer for about 20 years, was charged with 24 counts, including 17 felonies involving multiple charges including rape, kidnapping and aggravated indecent liberties with a child, The Hutchinson News reported.
Hutchinson Police Chief Jeffrey Hooper and District Attorney Tom Stanton declined to comment on any evidence tying Allen to the crimes. Hooper also declined to say if Allen was in uniform when the alleged sexual assaults occurred.
The criminal complaint listed 10 sexual assault victims and five others who alleged breach of privacy.
Allen was being held on $250,000 bond. Allen said during his first court appearance Thursday that he had begun communicating with an attorney, whose name was not immediately available.
The News reported that Allen was a school resource officer in 11 schools from at least 1996 through 2001.
Hooper said in a news conference Wednesday that a sexual assault occurred in a city park shortly after he became chief in 2018. Officers linked that assault to several others that had occurred earlier and appeared to be tied to one person.
The assaults stopped after Hooper publicized the alleged assaults in 2018, he said.
Allen, who joined the Hutchinson police force in 1994, resigned shortly after the sexual assaults were publicized in 2018.
A break in those cases came this year, when Hutchinson police began investigating a series of complaints about prowling or “window peeping,” Hooper said. Officers were able to determine those calls apparently were linked to the earlier sexual assaults and Allen was arrested on Wednesday, the chief said.
In 2018, Hooper said all the victims were females, ages 15 to 28, and all the assaults occurred between 9:30 p.m. and the early morning. He said the assailant would approach women sitting in a vehicle, shine a bright light in their face and identify himself as a police officer or park security.
The assailant, who sometimes work a mask, told the victim to get out of the car and assaulted them, Hooper said in 2018.