INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Two 10-year-old girls allege a City-County councilman representing a large portion of downtown fondled and inappropriately touched them, court documents show.
After a nearly monthlong investigation of the allegations, a probable cause warrant was issued Thursday for Jeff Miller, a Republican in office since 2012, on three counts of child molesting.
Miller, 50, was expected to resign his seat on the City-County Council as soon as Monday, said Jim Merritt, a state senator who heads the Marion County Republican Party.
County prosecutors said they were making arrangements with Miller to surrender to authorities. Shortly before 4 p.m., Miller was listed as an inmate in the Marion County Jail, but he was no longer listed at 10 p.m. A court set a $10,000 surety bond along with the warrant. Also, online court records show, the judge in the case has recused himself and called for a special judge to be appointed.
In an interview Oct. 20 with an investigator, one of the girls told her parents about the touching by Miller earlier that week “because they were watching the news about the famous guy that directs Broadway things and how he has been doing things like this. She feels guilty because she hasn’t told her parents about this.”
The girl said Miller “did bad touch” while giving her a massage.
The other girl told an investigator the news story was about American film producer Harvey Weinstein. That girl said Miller massaged her back and foot with various massage tools.The girl’s mom said her daughter told her that Miller gave her a piggyback ride and “grabbed” her butt. The mom said her girl told Miller to stop but he did not.
The girls had known Miller for about five years and often visited his Fletcher Place home because they were friends with Miller’s son.
Investigators interviewed Miller Oct. 21, the same day a search warrant was served at his home.
Miller confirmed the girls’ accounts that massages were sometimes given and received by people, including the girls, while they were “all in the room together.” He also told investigators about a collection of massage devices that were kept in the main room of the home.
Detectives said Miller said, “I try to operate on that old swimsuit rule. You know, don’t touch anybody where the swimsuit covers.”
Miller denied touching the girls in the groin or on a bra. “I would not say anything she said’s untrue. If she said something, it’s whatever she felt,” he told investigators, according to the court documents.
When the search warrant was executed, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers found 15 various massage tools in a basket on the stairs just inside the front door and a backscratcher in Miller’s upstairs bedroom.
Jennifer M. Lukemeyer is representing Miller in the case filed in Marion Superior Court, Criminal Division 6. She is with the downtown Indianapolis law firm Voyles Vaiana Lukemeyer Baldwin & Webb. A representative said the law firm does not comment on active cases.
A call to Miller has not been returned. No one answered the door at his home.
District 16 covers much of southwestern Center Township and adjacent parts of Wayne and Perry townships. He was re-elected to the office in 2015, and his current term extends through 2019.
In 2011, Miller’s wife of 11 years, Carolyn, died from leukemia, according to his biography on the city’s website.