Janitor accused of Sexual Abuse allowed to continue working

Janitor accused of Sexual Abuse allowed to continue working at elementary school

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HEBER - A man accused of sexually abusing a child in Heber is being allowed to work at two local elementary schools there, triggering an outrage from parents.

That man that is being accused of sexual abuse continues to work as a janitor at Heber Elementary during the day and at Dogwood Elementary during after school hours. The problem is, there are still children present at that time because of after-school programs and that has several parents concerned.

"I don't think my daughter is safe going to after-school programs", says Carolina Ramirez. "If he's around the school going into restrooms and taking out the trash, I don't think it's a safe environment for the kids anymore".

According to the mother of the child involved, it happened on October 23 in one of the bathrooms at Dogwood Elementary School.

The janitor, who's name will remain anonymous to protect him and all those affected, allegedly followed the 4 year-old inside the bathroom and sexually molested her.

Alicia Urias says that as far she's concerned, she is no longer comfortable sending her kids to school. She says that she has taken certain precautions with her son and daughter.

"I'm worried about my daughter, I'm scared for her safety", she says. "I'm scared for my son's safety. I told my daughter when you go to the bathroom from now on, you go with a group of friends and if you can't, you take your brother and he stands by the door while you go to the bathroom".

Instead of the School Board taking disciplinary actions towards the janitor, they simply moved him across town to Heber Elementary School, where he is still around children.

Erika Fernandez has a child in both Dogwood and Heber Elementary.

"I am scared, very scared" she says. "I'm afraid that someone will hurt my children. I thought school was supposed to be a safe place for children but that is no longer the case. I also think the school district is going about things that wrong way".

The group of parents have a petition with over 30 signatures already on it. They believe that the janitor should be put on administrative leave during the investigation.

Gladys Lopez did not want to appear on camera because of the severity of the case. Her daughter is close friends with the alleged victim.

"I am very uneasy right now", she says. "Very disturbed because my daughter told me that he hands them candy all the time and is always talking to them. That scares me because he is a janitor and shouldn't be getting so close to the children"

Imperial County Sheriff's Department would not release any information at this time

We also spoke to Heber Elementary School District, Jaime Silva and he assured KSWT that the janitor is no longer working around children.

Several of the parents are already talking about transferring their kids to a different school district because they say that they no longer trust this one.

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