Minnesota Renaissance Festival Artistic Director Charged With Rape
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A manager at the Minnesota Renaissance Festival faces two counts of felony criminal sexual conduct after a woman alleged he raped her on the fairgrounds last fall.
Scott County prosecutors filed charges this week against Carr Hagermann, the 59-year-old artistic director of the annual fair. According to the criminal complaint, a woman who worked as a freelance photographer told investigators that Hagermann repeatedly beat and raped her after luring her to a storage room in September.
She said he threatened to kill her if she reported the assault. She reported the alleged attack about a month later.
Hagermann denied the attack, saying he'd never even been alone with the accuser, but said he was aware of several allegations against him, according to the complaint.
The photographer's attorney, John Klassen, told the Star Tribune that other female festival employees have made sexual misconduct complaints against Hagerman.
"There has been an ongoing and yearslong issue of sexual harassment there and sexual exploitation of women," Klassen said.
Defense attorney Piper Kenney maintained Hagermann's innocence Friday, telling The Associated Press that the allegations against him are "he said, she said." Hagermann manages several hundred entertainers at the fair. He also has been a regular performer for nearly 40 years.
Mid-American Festivals Inc., the fair's management company, put Hagerman on a paid leave in November after an order of protection was served against him. The festival's internal investigation remains open.