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72-year-old Campbellsport man accused of sexually assaulting movie theater employee with autism

Humberto Paniagua

NEW BERLIN -- Actions at a New Berlin movie theater turned into a real-life horror for an employee. A 72-year-old Campbellsport man is accused of sexually assaulting her several times at work.

The victim's father tells police she is autistic and cognitively disabled. Although she is 24 years old, she functions at a mental age of a ten or 12-year-old.

72-year-old Humberto Paniagua has been charged with four counts of felony sexual assault for his alleged actions at the Marcus Ridge Cinema.

Marcus Ridge Cinema

The victim's father says his daughter has cleaned the lobby, theaters and bathrooms at the theater for the last four years.

Prosecutors say Paniagua would come to the theater while in town visiting his family. The victim says on several occasions he "touched" her and "hurt" her on her "privates" both over her clothing and under. At times he even used his mouth and also directed her to touch his genitals.

Court records state "she was scared and did not want to be touched," and the sexual assaults allegedly happened "approximately 20 times."

Marcus Ridge Cinema

Sometimes the incidents occurred in the dark theater. When police asked her about about yelling stop or no, she said "she did not want to get in trouble or disturb people watching the movie."

Surveillance cameras caught a number of the inappropriate advances, however it was a manager who saw an act firsthand and told Paniagua to stop and leave .

Marcus Theaters released a statement saying in part:

"This guest has been banned from all Marcus Theatres. This was truly an unfortunate incident. 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."

Police informed Paniagua of the charges and he said, "Oh, yeah, I understand."

Paniagua is set to make his initial court appearance Monday afternoon, April 3rd in Waukesha County.