The man accused of molesting an 8-year-old girl on a Martin’s Fantasy Island roller-coaster in June was charged Friday with sexually attacking a teenage Hamburg girl last year.
Now, authorities are wondering if there are other victims ready to come forward.
Free on bail in the Grand Island attack, Barry Hollis, 35, surrendered to Erie County Sheriff’s deputies Thursday. He was charged with second-degree rape of a minor, a felony count of criminal sexual act (sodomy) and child endangerment.
He remains jailed in lieu of $200,000 bail set Friday by Hamburg Town Justice Walter J. Rooth.
During a news conference Friday night in the downtown headquarters of the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, Capt. Gregory Savage, head of the detective bureau, said the possibility of other cases is being investigated.
In the latest case, Savage said, Hollis is accused of having at least two sex incidents late last summer or in early fall with a Hamburg girl between the ages of 14 and 17, at a Lake Erie beach in the Town of Hamburg.
Posing as a 17-year-old, he said, Hollis traded about 14,000 cellphone text messages with the girl, who was molested over five months. The detective offered no details how the relationship ended.
The suspect’s vehicle was impounded and is being tested, Savage said.
Hollis, who is unemployed and lives with his mother on Walnut Street in Niagara Falls, had been free on bail since his July 2 arrest in the Martin’s Fantasy Island case. He faces a felony hearing before Hamburg Town Justice Rooth on Tuesday.
Savage said Hollis was known previously to local law enforcement when he was living at a local trailer park.
Asked if Hollis confessed to other incidents, Savage declined comment, saying only, “those are evidentiary matters.”
“It would not surprise me that there are other victims,” said the detective, who believes media attention may prompt others to come forward.
Scott Zylka, executive assistant to Sheriff Timothy Howard, urged those with information on Hollis to contact the Sheriff’s Office confidential email service at www2.erie.gov/sheriff/index.php?q=send-confidential-emailcrime-tip, or call (716) 867-6161. Zylka stressed that the email address is the more confidential of the two ways to provide crime tips to the sheriff’s office.
Savage said that because of the growth of social media, parents “have to be so aware of who your kids are talking to (and) “set controls.”
Detective Dan Brinkerhoff was singled out for praise in the most recent investigation.