Girl assaulted by stranger at Englewood water park, family says


Pirates Cove water park in Englewood, Colo.

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ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- A day of fun in the sun took a dark turn for a family from Littleton after they said their 12-year-old daughter was physically assaulted by a stranger at the Pirates Cove Family Fun Aquatic Center over the busy holiday weekend.

Mike Mueller said a man grabbed his daughter's neck when she accidentally rubbed some suntan lotion on his towel.

The girl wasn't seriously injured, but Mueller said it was inappropriate and uncalled for. He wants to see the man charged with assault.

"She was immediately in tears. Of course, I said to the guy, 'Did you really just put your hands on my daughter?' And then I said to the park manager, 'I want you to call police immediately. I want you to press charges,'" Mueller said.

But Mueller said the park waited to call police and the man left before officers arrived.

Englewood Parks and Recreation, which owns the property, said it's investigating what happened and is interviewing all staff to make sure proper safety protocols were followed.

"We have, first of all, reached out to the family to express our concern," Englwood Parks and Recreation Director Dorothy Hargorve said in a statement. "The safety of our guests is, as always, our top priority and we are anxious to ensure that no similar incident could occur another time."

But that's not enough for Mueller.

"It's just concerning something like this could happen. I want to see the surveillance footage and I'd like police to see the footage, and if they deem it assault, I'd like to see who this person is," Mueller said.

Hargrove said while there are multiple surveillance cameras at the park, none captured the incident.

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