New details on state official allegedly asking boys to wear diapers

September 20, 2018 08:07 PM

COEYMANS - Eighteen months in diapers doesn't seem odd, but it is when you’re talking about young teenagers. That's how long police say John Allen was asking neighborhood boys to wear diapers around his home.

Allen, 61, is facing 29 counts of child endangerment. Coeymans Police allege Allen asked 12 and 13-year-old boys from his neighborhood to come into his home, take off their pants and wear baby diapers.

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Court documents do not say how many boys Allen asked to do this. Police allege the endangerment began in January of 2017 and ended in June of this year.

Allen was interviewed by NewsChannel 13 in June. Allen is a Special Assistant to the New York State Office of Mental Health Commissioner. The interview focused largely on the difficulties of accessing mental health services.

Allen also spoke about his personal background.

"Mental health issues were a part of my family experience. That's why I was hired into this position," Allen said. “Because I had personal experience of being involved in the system as a family member and a person who has accessed services."

Though it's unclear if Allen's mental health played a role in this case, on Wednesday OMH released this statement:

"Upon learning of these shocking allegations, OMH immediately moved to terminate Mr. Allen. Protecting all people in the state of New York is our primary mission and OMH is prepared to assist law enforcement in any way possible as they continue their investigation."

Some stepped up to defend Allen on Thursday. Though she refused to go on camera, one neighbor said she knows Allen and believes the charges are completely made up.

Bill Drinkwater is a new Baltimore man who frequently visits the park at the end of Allen's street. He said things like this don't usually happen in Coeymans.

"You hear it every day on the news in Albany, Schenectady, Troy the Tri-City area but not a local small town like this," Drinkwater said.

Allen was sent to the Albany County Jail on $10,000 bail. He will appear in Coeymans Town Court again on Oct. 16.

MORE INFORMATION: John Allen court documents


Emily Burkhard

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