The Santa Monica employee accused of molesting four boys while volunteering for a city youth group more 20 years ago was found dead in his apartment Thursday morning, city officials said.
Eric Uller, a technology analyst with the city’s information technology department, had been arrested at his workplace in October and charged with three counts of lewd acts on a child, two counts of oral copulation of a minor and one count of continuous sexual abuse.
Uller had been scheduled to appear in court Thursday morning. The court and Santa Monica officials were notified of his death, which appeared to have been a suicide, city officials said in a statement.
The city “was shocked to receive this news,” the statement said, and “remains committed to seeing this investigation through.”
Santa Monica had launched an independent investigation into allegations that city employees knew about accusations against Uller when he was a volunteer with the Police Activities League. Santa Monica police began investigating Uller over the summer after receiving an anonymous tip about the abuse allegations.
After police identified one accuser, they passed the information to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, officials said.
In addition to the four boys initially identified as potential victims, six additional people came forward to accuse Uller of sexual abuse, according to the Sheriff’s Department.
Altogether, the investigation covered allegations of abuse that spanned from 1986 to 2010.