Alleged Serial Groper Curtis Campbell Had Very Good Excuse

Categories: Crime
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It turns out at least four women groped along the Saratoga Creek Trail were apparently dealing with a really sweet man ... with issues
A rarity has emerged from a San Jose investigation: A story about an alleged serial groper who terrorized women jogging along a trail for months -- that's uplifting.

It turns out that admitted groper Curtis Campbell is a 29-year-old, developmentally disabled drugstore employee who apparently has the mind of a preteen and loves watching Nickelodeon -- and authorities have determined that he didn't realize he was sexually intimidating a series of women he grabbed by the legs. Apparently, he just wanted to make friends -- and he was repeatedly terrified himself when they screamed, so he ran away.

Campbell was nabbed after months of undercover work by San Jose police. "When they described to him the reactions of the women who he had touched, he didn't realize the gravity of his actions," SJPD spokesman Dirk Parsons told the media.

If anything, Campbell's behavior is reminiscent of that of Lennie Small, the rabbit-loving protagonist of John Steinbeck's Of Mice and Men. But while things ended as grimly as possible for Lennie, Campbell's future is looking brighter. 

While the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office filed a count of misdemeanor battery against Campbell related to the four trailside instances, it is not seeking any jail time. Instead, it appears likely prosecutors will push for probation, counseling, and a court order keeping Campbell off the Saratoga Creek Trail.

Nona Hughes, who heads the Santa Clara County public defender's office mental health unit, sang the praises of both the cops and prosecutors. (Try finding that kind of across-the-aisle goodwill up here in San Francisco. You won't.)

"The fact that police are recognizing somebody who is developmentally disabled and really doesn't have any idea of what he is doing and how he is terrorizing people is really great," she told the San Jose Mercury News. "Putting this young man in jail isn't going to deter future behavior or help anybody."

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