San Rafael Molest Suspect Arrested

By Gary Klien © 2000, Marin Independent Journal 4/21/00

A 36-year-old San Rafael man was booked into county jail last night on suspicion of molesting a 15-year-old Santa Rosa boy he met through an Internet chat room, police said.

John Zukaitis was arrested at his Gerstle Park apartment yesterday and booked on one count of lewd and lascivious acts upon a child, jail deputies said. Bail was set at $50,000.

The investigation began last October, when the boy told a Santa Rosa juvenile detective that he had been sexually assaulted in San Rafael, police said. San Rafael Detective David Starnes learned that Zukaitis met the boy online last June and invited him to his apartment, investigators said.

The boy told investigators he went to the apartment the following month and was sexually assaulted after his host plied him with alcohol and showed him pornographic videos, police said.

San Rafael Sgt. Jonathan Bean said the boy and the suspect met just once. There are no other victims in the case and the investigation is concluded, Bean said.

Police described Zukaitis as an AIDS counselor who volunteered at San Quentin State Prison. Zukaitis also had served on the Marin AIDS Commission until last week, when he took a leave of absence last week for health difficulties, according to commission member Gail Theller.

Zukaitis is scheduled to make an initial appearance in Marin County Superior Court at 1:30 p.m. today.

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