Wis. Billionaire Charged With Child Sex Assault

RACINE, Wis. (AP) — A billionaire executive whose family has run SC Johnson for five generations was charged Thursday with having sexual contact with a now 15-year-old girl over the course of several years.

Samuel Curtis Johnson III, who goes by Curt, faces a count of repeated sexual assault of a child. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 40 years in prison and a $100,000 fine.

Johnson, 55, is the former chairman of Sturtevant-based Diversey Inc., a cleaning-products company that was spun off from SC Johnson in the late 1990s. Privately held SC Johnson makes household products including Pledge, Glade, Windex and Ziploc.

Johnson resigned from Diversey’s board in February and was taking a leave of absence for personal reasons, the company said at the time.

Diversey spokesman John Matthews told The Associated Press on Thursday that Johnson had retired effective the end of March and that his leave of absence immediately removed him from any role with the company. Johnson was replaced by his sister.

The criminal complaint accuses Johnson of having inappropriate sexual contact with the girl 15 to 20 times, starting in the summer after she finished sixth grade. The girl told investigators that Johnson exposed himself, fondled her under her clothes and kissed her breasts and elsewhere.

The girl’s voice cracked and she began to cry as she described Johnson as having a “sex addiction” and “touching problem,” according to the partially redacted complaint.

Prosecutors said the girl confided about the abuse to her mother, who confronted Johnson. He allegedly admitted to fondling the girl’s breasts and repeatedly apologized for his behavior.

Johnson’s cash bail was set at $500,000. Messages left with both of Johnson’s lawyers were not immediately returned.

Family spokesman Harlan Loeb said Johnson is married with three children.

“Obviously this is a personal matter for Curt,” Loeb said. “Allegations of this nature are always deeply disturbing. The family is distraught and very much hopes for the best for everyone involved.”

Johnson’s brother is the chairman and chief executive of SC Johnson, based in Racine. Company spokeswoman Kelly Semrau said Johnson had worked for the company as a general manager and in other roles in the 1980s and early 1990s but had no formal relationship with the company in almost 15 years.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

  • Victim Du Jour

    She could be lying for money.

  • M.H.

    Then why would he admit to doing it.

    • Victim Du Jour

      I didn’t read the whole story, just the “billionaire charged with sexual assault” part.

      • Robin R.

        Helps to read the entire story.

  • lisa

    And the gir’s parents were where?

    Seems like there is a LOT more to this story than we’ve been told…

    • Victim Du Jour

      Like Micheal Jackson had to register for his problems in the 90’s. He still had a big line of parents wanting their kids at his sleep-overs.

  • districtofcriminals

    If you all don’t think this stuff is going on in D.C. ,also,you need to get your heads out of the sand.Congressmen,to bank presidents,to corporate c.e.o.’s,are getting children delivered to them all the time!

  • Guy

    “SC Johnson – a FAMILY company” … GOOD SLOGAN (NOT!!!)

    • Victim Du Jour

      Johnson and Johnson, the Baby Shampoo company probably doesn’t like the name SC Johnson, with this in the news.

  • Mel

    What a brave girl for finally telling her mother. My guess is that this girl was a friend of one of the perpetrator’s kids. I pray that she can get the healing she needs. I hope this man stays in jail for the rest of his life.

  • you know

    Only a half million for bale and he has billion’s………….
    That sucks this guy could go any where with the cash he has……….

  • Doug

    Like they say……15 will get ya 20…..or maybe even 40 in wisconson.

  • don

    If my child was having sex after graduation from the sixth grade and on i would know. sadly her parents are the ones that pimped her out. what is she doing alone all those times with a man. i smell a rat!

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