Editor’s note: this post, first published Oct. 18 at 3:08 PM, is being updated as additional information is received
A city of Santa Monica employee has been arrested for child molestation related to volunteer work with the Santa Monica Police Activities League.
Eric Uller, Principal Technology Analyst with the city’s information technology department was arrested by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department (LASD) on Thursday, Oct. 18. at about 9:30 a.m. for “lewd and lascivious acts on a minor ages fourteen (14) or fifteen (15) years old.”
According to LASD, their Special Victims Bureau was brought in at the request of SMPD over allegations Uller sexually assaulted four male victims going back to the 1990’s while a volunteer with the City of Santa Monica’s Police Activities League.
He was arrested by deputies from the Marina Del Rey substation and was being held on a $2 million bail. Uller has a court date scheduled for Oct. 22 at the LAX Superior Court.
According to a statement issued by the City of Santa Monica, SMPD received an anonymous tip about Uller earlier this summer. The case was referred to the Sheriff’s Department once a victim was identified.
Debbie Lee, Chief Communications Officer for the city, said officials were deeply disturbed by the allegations.
“The City is aware that a PAL employee was convicted in 2015 of a misdemeanor charge of annoying or molesting a minor,” said Lee in a statement. “That employee was fired. The City will continue to take all steps to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of youth enrolled in City-sponsored programs. The City has and will continue to cooperate fully with the Sheriff’s Department and the District Attorney’s Office as the matter proceeds. Mr. Uller has been placed on administrative leave, pending resolution of the charges.”
Uller’s work with SMPD includes the City’s crime map program, police security cameras and technology upgrades to patrol vehicles. He has been recognized by community service organizations and the city itself. In July of this year, Uller was part of a group of IT professionals recognized by City Manager Rick Cole for preventing a systems outage during a flood at the Public Safety Building.
Uller would be the second individual associated with PAL to face child molestation charges in recent years following the 2014 arrest of Donald Condon.
Condon was charged with five counts of child molestation. At least one case was related to a PAL field trip to Dodger Stadium where Condon was accused of taking surreptitious sexual pictures without consent while chaperoning a Santa Monica PAL event. At the time, Condon was said to have taken inappropriate photos of minors in a public place.
Condon worked at PAL, a city-backed nonprofit that serves area youth, but was eventually banned from all PAL locations and activities. The terms of his plea deal also prohibited him from attending any volunteer activities involving minors, and he is not allowed near his grandchildren without supervision.
Anyone with information related to the Uller investigation is encouraged to contact the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, Special Victims Bureau toll-free tip line at (877) 710-5273 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.