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A former co-worker of the Lansing-area youth sports referee charged with sexual misconduct speaks out

Posted at 10:21 AM, Oct 28, 2022

LANSING, Mich. — After the Ingham County Sheriff's Office released news Wednesday of a Lansing-area youth sports referee being charged with sexual misconduct with a minor, one former co-worker of the accused decided to speak out.

Gerald Allen Sutter, 70, is facing three counts of sexual misconduct with a minor.

Police believe all of the inappropriate behavior happened inside of Sutter's house in Lansing Township, but before the hard to hear allegations came to surface, Sutter was a well known youth sports official with 50 years of experience in Michigan.

“Very head strong and very wise on the field,” said Gary Kanan, Sutter’s former coworker.

Kanan worked with Sutter for over 30 years. While he was shocked about the allegations, he found himself siding with the teen victim, especially after police said Sutter may have used inappropriate tactics like gift giving to lure in young boys.

“I'm just disappointed, and I’m hurt because I have known this person for a long time, and never did I think he would do this,” Kanan said.

Sutter was a certified through the Michigan High School Sports Association, and Kanan said he was really focused on progressing as a youth sports official. But now, that career doesn’t seem too promising.

“Why Gerry, why would you do something that will ruin your career that you created for all these years, and now, it's like you created nothing,” Kanan said.

The Ingham County Sheriff's Office believes there are other victims out there. If you have any information on this case, be sure to call them at 517-676-8440.

Your Neighborhood Reporter

Tianna Jenkins

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