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Accused ex-D&C newspaper carrier supervisor once arrested for allegedly groping paperboys

Oct 20, 2019

A late supervisor of Democrat and Chronicle newspaper delivery carriers, who was accused in a recent lawsuit of sexually abusing a paperboy in the 1980s, was arrested in 1987 on suspicion that he was groping paperboys in a Greece doughnut shop.

Jack Lazeroff, the supervisor, was charged with disorderly conduct, a violation, according to the police report.

An employee of the shop, House of Donuts on Latta Road, told police that Lazeroff came into the store “almost daily with a young paperboy,” according to the report.

The report read that an employee described how Lazeroff would allegedly buy the boy a doughnut, then rub the inside of the boy’s thighs as the boy ate while sitting on a stool.

The employee “also stated that she feels the victims looks extremely uncomfortable at the time, and seems that he doesn’t know how to stop the suspect’s actions,” the report read. “(Witnesses) stated that they don’t know the name of the boy, but since then, the suspect has come into the shop with two other youths, and basically the same thing is happening.”

Police reported that investigators interviewed three boys who claimed to have been subjected to similar groping by Lazeroff. One of them was 13 years old, and another was 14.

The report, filed August 18, 1987, noted that Lazeroff was released on his own recognizance and was scheduled to appear in Greece Town Court to answer the charge on September 25, 1987. 

A Greece Town Court clerk said court records showed Lazeroff was charged with harassment, also a violation, but that the records did not reveal the disposition of the case.

Lazeroff, who died in 2003 at the age of 74, was the subject of a civil lawsuit filed under the Child Victims Act last week against the Democrat and Chronicle and its parent company, Gannett Co., by a former paperboy.

The lawsuit, first reported by CITY Newspaper and its media partner WXXI News, accused Lazeroff of repeatedly molesting Rick Bates, now 48, when Bates was living and delivering newspapers in Brighton as an 11- and 12-year-old boy in 1983. 

As also first reported by CITY and WXXI, Lazeroff was arrested in 1988 and charged with sexual abuse in the second degree, a misdemeanor reserved for incidents in which the alleged victim is under the age of 14 or unable to consent to sexual contact.

Records on file at Penfield Town Court, where the case was adjudicated, show he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of disorderly conduct.

David Andreatta is CITY’s editor. He can be reached at dandreatta@rochester-citynews.com.