Cari Steele, An Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in the Arlington
Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office Reported the Following:
MEH Principal Ty Harris Told Estrada that “Under No Circumstances Was He to Be Alone with Children”
Estrada Touched the Girls’ Vaginas Over their Clothes
Abuse Happened Almost Every Class Period
When One of the Children Started to Run Away, Estrada Blocked the Door
In Each Previous Jurisdiction He Worked, Estrada Faced “Allegations of Bad Behavior”
Each Time His Contract Was Not Renewed in Previous School Divisions
Why Did Estrada Keep Teaching If the Principal Barred Him from Being with Children Alone?
By Sam Mabry
Reporting and Commentary
To Protect Children in School: More Important that Instruction.
Aside from the alleged sexual battery of the two girls, most troubling is the report by the prosecutor that the school principal, Ty Harris, had counseled Estrada and apparently had sufficient reason to require that he not be alone with children “under any circumstances.” To determine exactly what Mr. Harris knew and when he knew it–what he did and didn’t do–is in all probability information that will not factually come out until the judicial process is underway. In addition, at some point, the parents of the children may decide that civil action is warranted In either case, the court of jurisdiction will determine what the citizens of Falls Church will eventually know about this matter.
What Did the Principal Know, When Did He Know It, and Was His Response Sufficient?
It will also be revealing what others in the school system knew about Mr. Harris’ direction to Mr. Estrada and why that requirement was put in place. It is possible, when that chain of information is unravelled, that it will reveal a systemic failure of the school system and its board to protect our children?
That Mr. Estrada reportedly moved through three other school districts before landing a job in Falls Church should have sent up warning flags. But it apparently did not. The Interim Superintendent’s statement indicated that the school system did what vetting it was required to do in the case of Mr. Estrada–but nothing more even in view of his multiple moves between school districts.
If You Really Want to Know–There Are Ways and They Are Legal.
There are privacy laws that protect employees from retribution while they are seeking a new job but in depth conversations with previous employers can glean a great deal of information as to the worthiness of an intended hire.
It would appear that no extra effort beyond the minimum was done in the case of Mr. Estrada and that may be the reason why he now stands accused of sexual battery of two of our school children.
Attitudes About Child Sex Abuse by Some in Falls Church May Concern Parents.
Mayor Dave Tarter spoke strongly and convincingly that the need to protect our children is a paramount community value. He is to be applauded for his forthright statement.
Nevertheless, given the sexual abuse case that occurred at George Mason High School several years ago, coupled with the sexual abuse of the young girls by Michael Gardner, and the outpouring of dis-heartiung support that both predators received after they had been convicted or plead guilty by elected and appointed Falls Church officials, gives rise to the question of whether tolerance among some influential community individuals and groups has risen to a perverse level.
Note: The Post article is based on news reports from regional sources including Channel 9, WUSA, the CBS affiliate and its reporter Peggy Fox. Fox has covered a number of child sex abuse allegations and convictions. The following is a link to her on camera report on the Estrada arrest as well as a written synopsis of that event.
http://www.wusa9.com/news/local/va-teacher-charged-with-sexually-abuse-faced-prior-investigation/414516560 via @WUSA9