Alleged Sexual Assault by Car Salesman - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

04/02/04 - Longview

Alleged Sexual Assault by Car Salesman

     A frightening ordeal for a Gilmer woman. She says she was sexually assaulted by a car salesman, who had escorted her on a test drive, and it all happened in front of her children. 32 year old car salesman Craig Benjamin Leonard has been arrested by Longview police.

    The woman was test driving a vehicle from Longview's Heritage Mitsubishi, with her infant and toddler in the car, when, she says, Leonard began to make advances towards her. She told police when she pulled into a Mccann road area parking lot to care for her crying infant daughter, Leonard sexually attacked her. The woman later called 9-1-1, and after questioning , Leonard was taken into custody.

     "I've never run across anything like this and to my knowledge I've never heard , can't recall any officers with this agency or any agency describing this kind of offense to take place where the children are actually in the same vehicle with him." says Sgt. S.W. Pendleton of the Longview police department. This isn't the dealership employee's first brush with the law.  Court records show Leonard is on parole for a 1995 incident in which he beat a 3 year old girl unconscious. Leonard is charged with felony sexual assault and parole violation.

Bob Hallmark, reporting.

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