The town of Aurora, Co., is once again in the headlines, this time as the location for the arrest of Richard Koca, 69, the founder of StandUp for Kids, a not-for-profit volunteer organization that reaches out to homeless kids and teens. Koca is accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a child and is charged with seven felony counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust involving a pattern of abuse. According to Aurora police spokesperson Sgt. Cassidee Carlson, police have identified one juvenile victim, whom Koca allegedly abused starting in 2009 into 2012. However, said Carlson, due to Koca’s history of working with kids, there may be other victims and they are encouraged to come forward.
An investigation into Koca began on August 29. Authorities say Koca, who founded StandUp for Kids in 1990, has worked with kids internationally and has been involved with the Boy Scouts as a Scoutmaster. Koca retired from working with StandUp for Kids in 2010. The organization, now based in Atlanta, issued a statement saying it has not been contacted by law enforcement regarding Koca’s arrest, but plans to cooperate fully. The StandUp for Kids website is down as of this writing.