By Blair Lovern
December 28, 2001
Padres pitching prospect Eric Cyr has served 30 days in jail and pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor sex charge in a federal court in Los Angeles Wednesday.
Cyr’s plea stemmed from a case in which he was accused of having sex with a 15-year-old girl on an airplane flight from Australia to the United States last April.
Cyr, 23, pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of sexual contact with another without consent, according to spokesman Thom Mrozek of the U.S. Attorney’s office in Los Angeles.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Margaret Nagel sentenced Cyr to one year of probation and 30 days in jail. He had been in custody for 30 days ending Dec. 26, Mrozek said. Cyr will also have to perform 250 hours of community-service work.
“He had surrendered himself 30 days prior to Wednesday with the anticipation he would receive a sentence in this range,” Mrozek said.
Padres officials could not be reached for comment Friday.
FBI agents arrested Cyr in April in Lake Elsinore on a charge of sexual abuse of a minor. Federal authorities handled the investigation because the incident occurred on a flight.
Charges alleged Cyr had sex with a 15-year-old girl in the lavatory of a Qantas Airways flight from Australia to Los Angeles in January, during Cyr’s return flight from playing winter ball. He was arraigned before a federal magistrate April 25 and was released on $35,000 bond. The original charge carried a maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison, Mrozek said.
The Padres signed Cyr, a native of Montreal, as a draft-and-follow out of Seminole (Okla.) Junior College in 1998. After learning of the criminal investigation, the Padres suspended him from their Class A Lake Elsinore roster in April, and he didn’t return to the field until June 6.
The lefthander went 7-4, 1.61 for the Storm, striking out 131 and walking 24 in 101 innings. He pitched in the Arizona Fall League, going 2-1, 2.18 in 33 innings, striking out 27 and walking 12.
“It’s kind of weird, but I think I’ve been dealing with it pretty good,” Cyr told Baseball America during the AFL season. “I don’t want to talk too much about it, but I’ve been dealing with it. Hopefully it will be over soon.”
The Padres added Cyr to their 40-man roster in November, and he was rated as the organization’s No. 7 prospect. He is expected to start next season with Double-A Mobile of the Southern League.