YMCA counselor charged with sexually assaulting camper
WTMJ News Team
Cody Holyoke reportsPhoto: Video by tmj4.com
CAMPBELLSPORT- A counselor at the YMCA's "Camp Matawa" is facing sexual assault charges -- after a boy said he was touched inappropriately.
Hundreds of kids come to Camp Matawa for a chance to get away from everyday life to build friendships and character.
The innocence of camp life was rudely interrupted earlier this week after camp directors sent a disturbing email to parents.
The announcement caught Ken Reibel by surprise.
"It just came in the inbox and said 'confidential" and I thought, 'something's going on,'" Reibel told TODAY'S TMJ4.
Reibel's daughter is staying at Camp Matawa.
One sentence highlighted in bold caught Reibel's attention. "I assure you your child is completely safe."
The message alerted moms and dads to the arrest of 18-year-old Troy Orthmann, a counselor at Camp Matawa.
He's charged with fourth-degree sexual assault after a 12-year-old boy claimed he touched his genitals -- and wouldn't stop.
"It's kind of the unthinkable, really, that there was an allegation of sexual abuse between a counselor and a kid," said Reibel.
A YMCA spokesman told TODAY'S TMJ4 that camp staff followed protocol and called authorities and the boy's family.
A statement released echoes the email to parents, reading in part:
"We are fully cooperating with authorities on this matter and out of respect for the families involved we can share no other information at this time."
Orthmann, who's now out of jail, was not at home on Friday. His mother answered the door.
"We're not supposed to talk about anything, they told us," said Orthmann's mom.
"We really haven't talked to him about it, and Troy is an Eagle Scout. He's been really active in the community, and I really feel that everything will come out, and everything will work really wonderful. So far, we just believe in him."
Back in the Kettle Moraine, parents picking their kids up from camp told TODAY'S TMJ4 that counselors are being as informative as possible.
"They talked with us.. I know they didn't talk directly with the kids, you know, because that's our job. That's a parents job," said mother Denise Ray.
A lesson parents argue shouldn't be necessary at such a young age.
"I'm kind of disappointed in the (YMCA) for not being a little more careful with the people that they hire as counselors," said Ken Reibel.
Orthmann will be back in court later this month to battle the misdemeanor charge.
TODAY'S TMJ4 was told that the 12-year-old stayed at camp for the remainder of the schedule, which ended Friday.