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Posted on Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 3:41 p.m.

Police: Sex assaults put 14-year-old boy at risk for HIV

By John Counts


Leonardo Devinci Christian

Courtesy of WCSO

The suspect in a sexual assault on a 14-year-old boy did not tell the victim that he's HIV positive, investigators said Friday afternoon.

Multiple charges against 53-year-old Leonardo Devinci Christian include one count of sexual penetration with an uninformed partner when there's risk of AIDS, a felony that carries a maximum penalty of four years in prison.

The victim, who told police he was 13 when the alleged assaults started, met Christian when the boy was invited to free holiday meals that Christian organized for the community.

Police said they don't yet know whether the boy is infected with the HIV virus, which can lead to AIDS. They also don't know whether other victims could come forward, since Christian appears very active in children's charitable efforts.

Police are still trying to determine if Christian passed the virus on to the 14-year-old boy.

“We don’t know yet,” said Sgt. Thomas Eberts of the Ypsilanti Police Department.

The two other felony charges Christian faces are second-degree criminal sexual conduct and CSC assault with intent to penetrate. He also has been charged with two high court-misdemeanors. A preliminary examination is scheduled for Sept. 11 in district court.

Christian was arrested Wednesday by police while he was driving around downtown Ypsilanti, where he is a well-known figure. He was a familiar face at Ypsilanti City Council meetings, which he videotaped for the website

“I was deeply saddened to hear the news today and my heart goes out to the victim and family,” Steve Pierce, co-founder of Wireless Ypsi which operates the site, told in an email.

Mayor Paul Schreiber said he was "shocked" by the charges.

"I'm sorry to hear this," Schreiber said. "It's just really surprising… I don't like to hear stuff like this.”

Schreiber said Christian is a community event organizer that has been "around for quite awhile."

"He did a fundraiser when there was a fire at Paradise Manor in 2007," Schreiber said. "Three children died and he did a fundraiser to help the families."

It was at one of the many fundraising events Christian organized that he was reportedly put into contact with the 14-year-old victim. Police said he gave the boy and his family free tickets to a charity Christmas dinner held at Korey’s Krispy Krunchy Chicken and Coops Charity Poker Room.

Corey Barden, the restaurant’s owner, also was shocked at the allegations. Christian had held the Christmas event at the Pearl Street eatery for the past three years.

“I wouldn’t think anything like that,” Barden said. “The only way I knew him was he was doing good for the community.”

Robert Doyle, Communications Manager for Wayne Disposal, Inc., said his company, which does a lot of community outreach programs, donated to one of Christian’s fundraisers.

Doyle said Wayne Disposal, a commercial hazardous waste landfill located in Van Buren Township, donated $300 to a fundraiser for the Ronald McDonald House.

“It’s shocking and just terrible news to even hear (this),” Doyle said.

Doyle said his company is always looking for organizations and causes to donate to and the company was given Christian’s name.

“That’s kind of how we were involved with his organization, “Doyle said. “He’s done a lot of good work up to this point which is why it’s so shocking.”

Police are looking into whether Christian came into contact with other victims through his charitable work.

“We are investigating and working on identifying more victims,” Eberts said.

The 14-year-old came to police attention when he disclosed information to a “required reporter,” which includes people in professions like medicine and education. That person then reported it to Child Protective Services, which contact Ypsilanti police.

Christian’s apartment was searched with a warrant after his arrest.

“We did collect some evidence and we are in the process of going through it,” Eberts said. staff reporter Katrease Stafford contributed to this report.

John Counts covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.



Tue, Sep 4, 2012 : 10:39 p.m.

My heart for this poor kid! Child abuse leaves lifelong scares on children, so let's make the punishment lifelong! Get tough Michigan, before it's too late!

music to my ear

Sun, Sep 2, 2012 : 1:29 p.m.

there seems by alot of comments removed this type of crime really makes people angry my God that young man may have a tough journey lets pray he ll be spared from a lifelong illness

Tom Todd

Sun, Sep 2, 2012 : 1:54 p.m.

Really this is what's wrong with society no open discussion about serious problems, the negative type of characters have there way and adults cannot vent concerns that are not at all in violation of some real type of vulgarity or other nonsense quite disappointed in, seems like a high school newspaper ran by the Wealthy.


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 6:35 p.m.

Who can be trusted anymore? I will be praying that this boy and anyone else who had contact with this man will not suffer for what he has done.

Dutch Thomas

Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 4:18 p.m.

this guy was a neighbor of mine and he always avoided me....and he sometimes had a kid with him when he was leaving....I shudder to think what I may have witnessed. This case is just getting started....more to come about this alleged perpetrator.


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 2:17 p.m.

What about innocent until proven quilty? I didn't realize that if someone is accused of a crime, their personal history can be given by police to the media. How would the police know this man is HIV positive? I don't personally know this man and if he did what he is accused of, I say throw the book at him. But if by some chance he is innocent, his life has been destroyed.

Ryan Munson

Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 3:24 a.m.

I am not judging anyone, but those charges are disgusting and just makes it that much harder for people who are legitimately trying to help our community through mentoring and/or volunteerism while working with kids, especially for males.


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 3:07 a.m.

I just saw this on the news, makes me sick!


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 12:53 a.m.

4 years for assault with a deadly weapon? Seems kinda low. If the kids turns HIV+ it should be treated as murder.


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 7:50 p.m.

I've read that HIV is now a chronic virus and not a terminal disease, so not sure how that reconciles with your thought process ?


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 4:54 p.m.

I heard of this. AIDS is considered a deadly weapon. Not sure how it fits into this crime thing but I heard somewhere in the 80's that if you knowingly do? You can be held on murder charges because even though AIDS victims are living longer? It still can be a death sentence overall. Have you seen the drugs they take? Scary.

Angry Moderate

Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 4:17 a.m.

It may only be treated as murder if someone is dead.


Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 2:47 a.m.

Murder, If the boy lives?


Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 11:43 p.m.

The ones you trust the most end up hurting the ones they love. This is so true of perps like this. Wow. I really hope the boy turns out ok. Keep us posted on the perps jail time.


Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 10:39 p.m.

if I'm reading this correctly, he's facing multiple charges, 1 of which carries a maximum of 4 years. How much is he facing on the other charges?


Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 9:56 p.m.

my point is a charge of that has only a maximum of 4 years when there is consent (which does NOT seem to be enough) it should carry even MORE weight and a higher maximum of years when it is a rape and more so when a rape of a child.


Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 8:42 p.m.

Ok this just got all kinds of messed up....

Mulberry Bank

Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 8:37 p.m.



Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 8:18 p.m.

This man, if guilty will get a least some jail time and 3 years probation. He will also have to do sex offender treatment which of course doesn't work at all but will make people feel better that at least something was tried. Oh he'll have to register as a sex offender too. Having sex with 13 year old boys and giving them AIDS will have "harsh" penelty's. My comment has a 50/50 chance of being deleted because the AANEWS will not tolerate what their readers/clients write when they don't argee with them even when we support their coporate advertisers. Yes, I buy at Meijer.

Ann English

Sat, Sep 1, 2012 : 10:49 p.m.

The returning college students and their roommates like to shop at Meijer; at one Meijer location last week, I heard young men asking their roommates if they wanted to buy pizza and other foods favored by college students. At another Meijer, I heard a student with a foreign accent (trilling her R's) asking friends where the bread was. Usually, there isn't so much conversation taking place at Meijer apart from small children and parents.


Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 9:53 p.m.

The pre-protective "I shop at ..." is irrelevant. If you are appalled, as I am, you are aghast. Just say so. Does everything have to be framed in some other context? Do the misfortunes of others constantly have to be used for petty political points? A child was raped. I repeat : A child was raped. Don't talk about law and blah blah: A child was raped.

Bertha Venation

Fri, Aug 31, 2012 : 8:14 p.m.

uh oh.... not good. Can the boy get tested? If it has been more than 6 months since the abuse, it should show up if he has it. Hope he's negative.