Registered sex offender arrested at Niles ball park

Published 1:32 pm Thursday, May 25, 2006

By By ANDY HAMILTON / Niles Daily Star
NILES - An alleged sex offender was arrested Tuesday evening at a Niles softball field by Niles City Police.
Sammie Earl Fee, 48, of 1810 Pucker St., Niles, was arrested Tuesday at 6:27 p.m. at Vella Softball Field on the corner of North 17th and Lake streets for violating conditions of a registered sex offender.
Police reports indicate officers were dispatched to the softball field on a report of an alleged sex offender videotaping the game between Niles High School and Lakeshore High School.
Upon arriving at the scene, the report states officers made contact with an employee of Niles Community Schools. The school employee pointed out Fee videotaping the game to the officers. While talking with the school employee, Fee allegedly made his way to his vehicle, the report states.
An officer states in the report he made contact with Fee at the vehicle to question why Fee was at the game. The report states Fee told officers he was watching and taping the last game of the season for the seniors that were graduating.
Fee was then advised he was not permitted to be within 1,000 feet of an event taking place on school property that has anyone under the age of 18 participating. The report states officers confirmed Niles Community Schools leases Vella Softball Field for the purposes of sports and recreational activities for students.
Fee granted officers permission to look at his camera, and the report states more tapes were found on Fee's person. Fee then told officers he did not have any children playing in Tuesday's game.
Officers state Fee was arrested and transported to the Niles Law Enforcement Center. After Fee was removed from the police vehicle, officers state in the report a substance alleged to be marijuana was found in the back seat of the vehicle where Fee was sitting. The officer also stated he checked his vehicle before placing Fee in it.
The incident was not the first time Fee had been observed videotaping a girls high school sporting event in Niles, police report allege. The Niles school employee told officers Fee was also seen at the softball game Monday evening, but left before the police could be contacted.
Fee was also noticed videotaping at a NHS volleyball match on Saturday, April 30, 2005, police reports said. At that incident, Fee claimed he was producing tapes for the school.
A Niles Police officer later checked with the school district and was told Fee had never been hired by the school system to make the video tapes.
The school also told officer it was not aware of any tapes made by Fee.
Superintendent of Niles Community Schools Doug Law said a registered letter from the district was sent to Fee on May 5, 2005, and was the result of the April 30 incident.
A separate incident occurred on Sunday, Jan. 11, 2006, when a Niles Police Officer reported seeing Fee allegedly attempt to pick up a young female walking on Front Street near River Street in Niles.