OTERO COUNTY, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico man accused of touching young boys back in the 1970’s when he was a Boy Scout leader is now facing a new round of allegations this time as a volunteer at an Alamogordo museum. Four New Mexico boys all under the age of 11 say 70-year-old Larry Strain either touched or tried to touch them inappropriately.
“Based upon the information and evidence Mr. Strain had a certain intent when he was around these young children,” said Otero County Sheriff’s Deputy Lee Wilder.
According to the criminal complaint, Strain’s intent was to gradually get the boys used to the idea of being with a man, which is known as grooming.
Deputies say Strain, who was a volunteer at the Alamogordo Space Museum, met at least one of his victims there. They say Strain would buy the kids gifts then invite them over to his La Luz home to play.
“We saw things to believe that that house was created as a playhouse for young children,” said Wilder.
Deputies would not say exactly what they found inside Strain’s home, but they did tell KRQE News 13 they found a list of young boys names, names they believe could be Strain’s victims too.
“I’ve received information from people in the area that he’s had children there quite often over the last decade,” said Wilder.
Back in 1973, Strain, a Boy Scout leader in Missouri at the time was accused of a similar crime. According to a Boy Scouts of America document, Strain had inappropriately touched three young boys. Deputies say Strain refused to comment on the allegations.
Strain’s brother said he’s innocent.
“He’s not that type of person,” said Strain’s brother John Strain. “He’s a very kind man that likes children. What’s wrong with liking children?”
Strain has been fired from his volunteer position at the space museum.
Deputies don’t know if Strain was ever arrested for the 1970’s allegations in Missouri. They say they’re having a hard time tracking down any paperwork from there.