Arizona

Prominent teen activist indicted on charges of sexual misconduct with minor

Caleb Laieski (right) with President Barack Obama at the White House pride reception in 2011. BRODY LEVESQUE

PHOENIX — A prominent LGBT rights and anti-bullying teen activist faces more than a dozen charges of sexual misconduct with a minor.

Caleb Laieski, 18, was indicted by a grand jury in Phoenix, Ariz., on the sex crime charges as part of a case against former Phoenix Police Detective Chris Wilson.

Caleb Laieski (right) with President Barack Obama at the White House pride reception in 2011.

Official White House photo
Caleb Laieski (right) with President Barack Obama at the White House pride reception in 2011.

Wilson was arrested in December 2012 in the alleged sexual assaults of two male teen, ages 14 and 17. According to the Phoenix New Times, Laieski is that 17-year-old.

Laieski’s indictment doesn’t provide details about the alleged crimes, but accuses him of engaging in sexual activity with the 14-year-old.

Wilson, who resigned from the Phoenix police department following his arrest, had met Laieski and the 14-year-old while serving on department’s Community Response Squad as a liaison officer to the LGBT community.

The 14-year-old victim, who’s also emerged as a prominent young activist against anti-gay bullying, had told his parents about his alleged relationships with Laieski and Wilson, prompting his parents to file a complaint.

Laieski has said that he was “16-years-old, or at most, 17-years-old” when the alleged sexual encounters occurred, according to court filings.

Laieski began his anti-bullying activism after dropping out of high school at age 16. He achieved his GED, and rose to national prominence in May 2011 when he traveled to Washington to lobby Congress during a month-long lobbying crusade to garner support for the Student Non-Discrimination Act (SNDA).

He later met President Barack Obama and Vice-President Joe Biden as a guest at the White House pride reception in June 2011.

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In 2012, Laieski served as a youth and diversity advocate for Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton’s office, and was featured in the anti-bullying documentary “Bullied to Silence,” released later that year.

Earlier this year, Laieski worked on the congressional committee staff for House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer, (D-Md.) and is currently employed by the Arlington County, Va., police Department as a 911 dispatcher.

Laieski was released from custody on a personal recognizance bond with an arraignment scheduled for next week.

The judge allowed a defense motion to allow Laieski to return and reside in Virginia pending trial.

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