NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — An innocent, 8-year-old girl is the alleged victim of multiple sex attacks — by her own teacher.
Shocked to her core, Dionne Reeves learned Thursday afternoon the man who teaches her 11-year-old daughter is behind bars, charged with sexually abusing an 8-year-old.
“He always seemed nice, very attentive to the children about their education,” reeves told CBS 2’s Dave Carlin.
The teacher is identified as 29-year-old Rafael Sosa of Harlem’s P.S. 208. CBS 2’s Carlin has learned the young girl was allegedly attacked on several occasions in or near the school. He was removed from the classroom following his arrest.
Parents just hearing about it on Thursday said they’re angry school officials kept quiet about the alleged incidents.
“Hopefully there’s a meeting and parents come together, find out and talk to our children and see what happens,” Reeves said.
Reeves said her daughter told her she was put in a different class on Thursday. The reason given was that Sosa had a family emergency.
Parents said Sosa is married with a young son and step-daughter.
“They need to check them closer check. Their backgrounds background checks on these people and parents need to become more involved as well, find out what is going with their children in the classroom with their teachers and so that possibly curtail some of this kind of behavior,” said parent Susan Abdul Malik Dunn.
The Department of Education said Sosa was appointed an elementary school teacher in September 2007 and worked at P.S. 90 in the Bronx. He began at P.S. 208 in Manhattan in September 2009. There were no prior investigations and the DOE said he passed a background check.
Sosa’s arrest is the latest in a string of sex-related arrests of Department of Education employees. Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently rolled out new legislation designed to get teachers brought up on sexual misconduct charges out of classrooms. More than a dozen are still in the classroom.
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