GREAT BARRINGTON -- About 60 men and women braved chilly temperatures and snowy skies to attend a candlelight vigil on the lawn of the Mason Library on Sunday night.

"I'm impressed," said organizer Gabrielle Senza. "This is a good turnout."

The crowd came together in support of five alleged victims of former school counselor Scott Muir. Two weeks ago, Muir, 39, was acquitted of 19 counts of sexual abuse in connection with a series of alleged assaults between 2003-06.

The attacks allegedly happened at the Stockbridge Plain School and later at the Muddy Brook Elementary School.

The weather was cold with a whisper of snow and sometimes rain. Some people brought candles, while others used candles provided by their neighbors. There were a lot of hugs and cries of recognition.

"I think we're just trying to show we're a decent, supportive community," said resident Maggie Hazelton, who made about 200 calls to get the word out. "We want these girls to know we support them."

Several of those in attendance emphasized that the five women were good citizens of the community.

Senza has also set up a Facebook page "We Believe You" that is also a statement of support for the five women.


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