SKOWHEGAN — Gerald Keenan, a former physician assistant (PA) at Mount Desert Island Hospital and an athletic trainer at MDI High School, was sentenced Aug. 12 in Somerset County Superior Court to seven years in prison for sex crimes involving two pre-teen boys who were patients of his in Jackman, where he worked as a PA before coming to Bar Harbor.
Keenan, 67, worked at MDI Hospital from 2003 to 2013 and, through a contract between the hospital and the high school, he was an athletic trainer for about three years starting in the fall of 2006.
A Somerset County grand jury indicted Keenan in September 2019 on 21 counts. He pled guilty in July to two counts of unlawful sexual contact and two counts of sexual abuse of a minor. The rest of the charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.
In addition to seven years of incarceration at the Maine State Prison in Warren, Keenan was sentenced to 12 years of probation following release and lifetime registration as a sex offender. There are currently about 300 registered sex offenders in Maine.
Kenan is a former Boy Scouts leader. According to documents filed with the court, Boy Scouts officials said a file on Keenan revealed “potentially inappropriate sexual activity” in August 1983. A representative of the Boy Scouts said the organization subsequently revoked his affiliation.
At the time of Keenan’s indictment two years ago, MDI High School Athletic Director Bunky Dow said he had been the trainer for the boys’ basketball and wrestling teams for the first year of his affiliation with the school. After that, Dow said, Keenan only had time to provide coverage for the wrestling team during meets.
“He also did the first-aid part of educational courses for our coaches, and he helped out with some physical exams,” Dow said.
Keenan’s former wife, Nancy Keenan, who lives in Ohio, said in an email to the Islander that he had worked in family medicine in at least eight states and that his history of “sexual assault of young boys dates back to the mid-1970s.”
“There are other victims from your area who were unable to come forward – some due to fear, shame and distrust of the system,” she said.
Knowing that Gerald Keenan is now behind bars “will add to their healing and peace,” she said.
Reporter Taylor Abbott of the (Waterville) Morning Sentinel contributed to this story.