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Victim's family sues group home where predator lived

Victim's family sues group home where predator lived

LA MESA (CBS 8) - There's a new legal move in the case of a sex offender accused of molesting two boys in Lakeside. A victim's family is suing the operators of the group home where the predator was living at the time.

When Marco Valenzuela's son came home and told him a man had just touched his genitals and bottom, he took no time at all to approach the man who did it.

"He stood there and said 'I'm sorry I like little kids,'" Valenzuela said.

Now the Valenzuela family has filed a lawsuit against Expanding Horizon, the company who runs the Lakeside group home where Joseph Cantorna was living at the time of the alleged molestation incident.

"We have nothing against group homes, we have something against owners of group homes that can't properly supervise residents," attorney James Morgan said.

Morgan says filing a lawsuit against Expanding Horizon and its owner Steven Lefort has more to do with public safety than money.

"It's a safety issue for the residents of the group home as well as the neighbors, and if [Lefort] can't run the facility properly then he needs to get out of the business," Morgan said.

News 8 tried to get in touch with Steven Lefort regarding the lawsuit, but no one would open the door at the La Mesa headquarters. Previously, Lefort did talk to News 8 and had this say about the incident: "I am sorry that this had to occur."

As for Joseph Cantorna, he had a competency hearing to determine whether or not he's mentally able to face the four felony counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a minor. The results of that hearing are not yet known.

In the meantime, James Morgan says Lefort has done little to help minimize group home residents from harassing the Lakeside neighborhood. He claims the residents are known to knock on doors and urinate on lawns.