Parents speak out after school employee arrested for alleged child sex abuse charges
CRESCENT CITY- Gary Moore, a 52-year-old employee at Crescent Elk Middle School was arrested and facing child sex abuse charges.
Crescent Elk parent, Nathan Burgess said, "I’m shocked. Appalled about it." Burgess currently has two boys that attend Crescent Elk in Crescent City. He added, "I’m questioning their safety right now to tell you the truth.”
Moore oversees the after school activities at Crescent Elk, but after allegations of inappropriate touching, and the distribution of sexually related items to several students, he’s now facing charges for Child Abuse, Sexual Battery, Assault, and Lewd Conduct with a Minor. According to school officials the alleged incidents took place on campus.
Superintendent for the Del Norte Unified School District, Don Olson said, "we are not going to stand up idle with behaviors like this from any employee... Because we have to keep students safe."
The investigation started after a parent came forward with a cell phone video that allegedly showed Moore hitting a young girl on the leg. After a one-month investigation by the Crescent City Police Department, Moore was taken into custody. Superintendent Olson added, "when we became aware of it we also ran an investigation so we immediately interviewed 6 to 8 students and got statements from them."
According to school officials the alleged misconduct has been happening as far back as last school year. About 600 students attend Crescent Elk. Throughout the day Moore may have come in contact with up to 100 students. Parent, Heidi Fisher added, "it’s very bothering, especially having four kids in the school system here… It scares me."
Moore is currently on paid leave while the case is underway, and tonight he remains in custody at the Del Norte County Jail.