A manager at a McDonald's restaurant in Maple Grove raped a 14-year-old employee in the cooler and assaulted her elsewhere for weeks afterward, according to charges.
Andrew Otero Albertorio, 24, of Maple Grove, was charged last week in Hennepin County District Court with five counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct and remains jailed in lieu of $100,000 bail.
An employee at the McDonald's, located near Bass Lake Road and Interstate 494, said Tuesday that Albertorio no longer works there.
"These sexual assaults, if proven in court, reflect deplorable conduct," County Attorney Mike Freeman said in a statement. "A 24-year-old manager abusing his position of authority upon a young girl is wrong. Thankfully, the legislature has made such conduct a serious felony, and rightfully so."
According to the charges:
The girl began working at the McDonald's over the previous summer and would be the object of flirtations during work by her night manager.
In November, they began exchanging messages on Snapchat and Albertorio began trying to kiss her, but she would push him away.
The two discussed having sex, but she said she was too young and didn't want him to get in trouble.
In early December, Albertorio cornered her in the McDonald's walk-in cooler, began touching her and said he wanted to have sex. Over her objections, he pulled down her pants and raped her.
The girl said "she felt pressured into the act," the criminal complaint read.
For the following month, Albertorio raped the teen in the cooler, in the restaurant's backroom, in Albertorio's vehicle and at his home.
She said Albertorio gave her additional hours and paid her directly in order to avoid violating state child labor laws.
Employees who are 14 or 15 years old are limited by law in the number of hours they can work in a day or a week and how late into the evening they can work. State labor officials said there have been no employment violations at this McDonald's.
This location is franchise-owned. Owner Shahab Hyder, in a statement released through a McDonald's regional spokeswoman, said, "We are appalled by the alleged actions of this manager. Nothing is more important than the safety and security of our customers and employees, and I can confirm this manager is no longer employed by my organization."
Messages have been left with one of the owners, Hyder Investments Inc., for comment about the allegations.
The counts against Albertorio point to the girl's young age and his position of authority over her. Prosecutors have said that they will seek an especially long sentence should they win a conviction on first-degree criminal sexual conduct.
A message was left with Albertorio's attorney seeking a response to the charges. Albertorio is due back in court on Feb. 22.