SEVIERVILLE – A lawsuit was filed Monday in the Circuit Court for Sevier County against Armando Martinez Gonzalez and Dixie Stampede LLC. by B. Doe, individually and on behalf of C. Doe.
The mother of one of three children allegedly sexually abused by a former employee of Dixie Stampede has filed a lawsuit against the theme show and the alleged abuser.
According to records, Gonzalez, a former Dixie Stampede worker was charged with sexual battery against three child performers backstage at the dinner attraction last November.
Pigeon Forge police charged Gonzales with 3 counts of aggravated sexual battery. “Those charges are still pending,” according to Jack Baldwin, Chief of Pigeon Forge Police Department. “Our sources tell us that as soon as he was charged he went back to Mexico and that’s where he is today.”
“We deal with people charged with all kinds of sexual assaults against children and this is the first time I can remember of this happening at a business,” stated Baldwin.When the theme show management found out about the charge, Gonzales, a two and a half years employee, was immediately suspended from his job as a backstage entertainment tech, and was barred from the premises, according to Pete Owens, with Dixie Stampede.
“Gonzales worked for the company for about two and a half years. He exhibited no behavior that would lead one to believe a situation like this would be possible. When the allegations did surface it was dealt with immediately. The employee was removed from the situation and barred from returning to the property,” stated Owens. 
Gonzalez was also an entertainer and dressed as an elf for performances at the theme show. The lawsuit claims Dixie Stampede was negligent because it kept parents in the break room away from their children before and during the show. It goes on to allege that lack of supervision allowed the abuse.Pete Owens responded to the lawsuit Tuesday afternoon, saying, “We trust the legal system will fairly determine the outcome of the matter. Dixie Stampede believes these claims are without merit and is confident, once the facts are known, the lawsuit will be dismissed.” The lawsuit seeks monetary damages for the child and her mother of up to $16 million.

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