Prosecutors get time to 'marshal' witnesses in abuse case against Scott Muir

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PITTSFIELD -- The trial date for a former school aide accused of molesting students has been pushed to Oct. 28 to give prosecutors time to gather numerous witnesses for trial.

Scott Muir, 38, of Stockbridge, is accused of sexually abusing five girls while employed as a student center support coordinator at the former Stockbridge Plain School between 2002 and 2007, the year the school closed.

Muir's responsibilities included improving student self-esteem, controlling student behavior and supervising children in the cafeteria and playground.

One of the girls alleges Muir raped her multiple times in his office between 2003 and 2005 when she was between the ages of 7 and 9. Two girls, 10 years old at the time, allege Muir abused them at school in 2004.

Another said he molested her in 2003 and 2004. A fifth alleges Muir abused her in 2005 2006.

Tuesday in Berkshire Superior Court, prosecutor Rachael Eramo extra time was needed to "marshal ... multiple witnesses," which include the five complainants, witnesses from the school, and the girls' confidantes about the alleged abuse. The case was originally scheduled to be on the September trial list.

Muir's attorney, William A. Rota, said it would take a day or two to pick a jury and testimony could take between five and six days.

Judge Daniel A. Ford asked Eramo if Muir had been offered any plea deals.

"I have not," Eramo replied. "Attorney Rota has been pretty clear since the beginning that this would be heading to trial."

Rota agreed with that assessment.

Muir remains free on $10,000 bail. He is facing 20 charges, including multiple counts of rape of a child with force and indecent assault and battery of a person under 14. He has denied the allegations against him.

Meanwhile, a civil suit filed with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination against Muir and the Berkshire Hills Regional School District remains in limbo. The suit has been brought by four of the alleged victims.

MCAD is determining is it has jurisdiction in these types of cases, according to Michael Aleo, the lawyer for the firm representing the four women in the suit.

Muir's attorney and the school district have filed motions to dismiss the civil suit on the grounds that MCAD isn't the proper venue for the suit, said Aleo. If MCAD determines it is the proper venue, it could ultimately award monetary damages to the victims, among other possible remedies.

Aleo said they may still file suit in state or federal court.

To reach Andrew Amelinckx:
aamelinckx@berkshireeagle.com,
or (413) 496-6249.
On Twitter: @BE_TheAmelinckx


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