Reconsidering Award to Minister

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The chairman of Lincoln's Commission of Human Rights wants the commission to consider a prestigious local award it presented in 2002 to the Reverend Norman Leach.

Ernesto Castillo says it bothers him in light of recent allegations against the Reverend Norman Leach. Leach received the city's Human Rights Award recognizing outstanding achievement in improving human relations in Lincoln.

Leach is accused of fondling a Boy Scout who belonged to a troop Leach founded. He has pleaded innocent to one count of misdemeanor child sexual assault. He is accused of committing the crime in the basement of his residence, beginning in October.

Castillo wants the issue on the commission's agenda to discuss it with fellow commissioners. He says he wants an informed commission since several members have come on board since 2002. He says the commission gives the award and can take it away.

Mayor Coleen Seng says she would leave the decision about what to do with Leach's award to the discretion of the Commission on Human Rights.