Top GOP candidate in Mass. House race dealt blow from strip-search victim

Congressional candidate Jeff Perry’s bid for the U.S. House was rocked Wednesday by a 19-year-old allegation that he was present during an illegal strip-search of a Massachusetts child.

Perry, a Republican, was a police sergeant in 1991 when 14-year-old Lisa Allen was strip-searched by a police officer under Perry’s watch in Wareham. The incident occurred in a cranberry bog. 

The woman had not come forward publicly until Wednesday, when she issued a statement.

Perry issued a statement to the Boston Globe that did not directly deny the changes, but said that “what happened to Lisa Allen was wrong and should never happen to anyone.” He also denied being at the scene when asked about the case by the Globe earlier this year.

The officer who searched Allen, Scott Flanagan, confessed to the incident and was convicted in 1993 of indecent assault on a child and of civil-rights violations.

Perry is a state representative from Sandwich. He is the Republican nominee for the seat held by the retiring Rep. Bill Delahunt (D).