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Fishertown, PA - Chestnut Ridge Assistant Principal Faces Over 60 Counts for Failing to Report Alleged Sexual Assault of Six Students on School Bus

Fishertown, PA - Chestnut Ridge Middle School Assistant Principal Patrick N. Isgan Faces Criminal Charges for Failing to Report Alleged Sexual Assault on School Bus
Published: March 25, 2024
By: Darla Medina
Last Updated on March 26, 2024

Bedford County Assistant Principal Arrested for Failing to Report Alleged Sexual Assault on School Bus

Chestnut Ridge Middle School Assistant Principal Patrick N. Isgan has been charged with 62 counts related to the endangerment of children and failure to report suspected sexual assault of students on a school bus, according to The Tribune-Democrat. The charges come after Bedford County authorities conducted an investigation into allegations of sexual assault of six students by a 12-year-old male juvenile during transport to and from Chestnut Ridge Middle School located at 3281 Valley Rd, Fishertown, PA 15539.

According to a Pennsylvania State Police affidavit, the investigation began in February 2023 after ChildLine reports were received about the alleged sexual assaults. ChildLine is a 24-hour hotline for reporting suspected child abuse.

State troopers met with Isgan and the middle school Principal, Greg Lazor, on February 12 to discuss the incidents. During the meeting, school officials informed the troopers that they had previously looked into the matter in November and concluded that no sexual assault had occurred.

The initial alert about a potential problem came from the district's transportation provider in November. It was reported that the 12-year-old had sexually harassed an 8-year-old female on the bus. However, the older child denied the claim, and Isgan, after reviewing security footage from the bus, did not witness any inappropriate touching. The 12-year-old was reprimanded, instructed to keep his hands to himself, and removed from the bus for a day.

In February 2024, a concerned parent reported additional incidents of inappropriate conduct, which prompted another investigation. During this investigation, it was revealed that the male child had touched others repeatedly and used his coat as a cover. One 6-year-old female student alleged that the older child touched her private area and refused to stop when asked. A 5-year-old male student also reported that the older boy touched his genital area and ignored requests to stop.

Isgan met with the accused 12-year-old student, who denied the claims. Subsequently, the student was removed from the bus and assigned to a school van. Upon reviewing the November security footage with Principal Lazor, Isgan noted possible instances of inappropriate touching.

A meeting with the accused student and his parents led to a full confession, and the first ChildLine report was made by Isgan on February 7. However, when Pennsylvania State Police reviewed the November footage with the principals, they observed the 12-year-old touching a male 6-year-old in the genital area directly behind the driver. The older student allegedly placed book bags on their laps to obscure his actions.

The affidavit states that six victims were assaulted by the 12-year-old from November to February, and he was accused of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, indecent assault, and aggravated indecent assault. The affidavit also states that the sexual assaults were occurring daily.

Isgan was arraigned before District Magistrate Kevin Diehl and is out on $1 million bond. He is prohibited from having contact with minors and is not permitted within 500 feet of any areas where minors typically gather. A preliminary hearing is set for March 27, 2024, in front of Diehl.

Bedford County District Attorney Ashlan Clark emphasized the importance of mandated reporters in protecting vulnerable children and preventing abuse. “Isgan’s failure to report the allegations of sexual assault in November led to these children being repeatedly victimized and suffering irreparable harm that could have been avoided,” Clark said.

Brian Kent - Attorney
Hi. I am attorney Brian Kent. If you or a loved one were injured or killed in a similar incident, I would be happy to speak with you and discuss your options.
Call the number below. It would be my honor to help you. Consultations are free.
(888) 997-3792

Understanding Legal Options for Victims of Sexual Abuse on a School Bus

The recent sexual assault case involving Chestnut Ridge Middle School has left many wondering about the legal options available to victims and their families. To help shed light on this issue, we sat down with sexual assault victims' rights attorney Brian Kent to discuss the possibility of pursuing a civil lawsuit against liable parties. In this interview, Kent explains who might be held responsible, what kind of damages could be sought, and the statute of limitations for filing a claim.

Editor Darla Medina (DM): Welcome, Brian. In regards to the situation involving the sexual assault of several students on a school bus, what can the victims and their families do in terms of a civil case against the liable parties?

Brian Kent, Esq. (BK): Thanks for having me, Darla. In situations like this, it's important for the victims and their families to know that they have options beyond the criminal case. They can pursue a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator and any other parties who may have been negligent and contributed to the abuse.

DM: Can you give us an example of who might be considered liable in a case like this?

BK: Sure. In a school bus setting, the school district, transportation company, or even individual school employees could potentially be held liable if they failed to take reasonable steps to prevent or stop the abuse. This might include things like inadequate supervision, failure to investigate reports of misconduct, or failure to train or monitor employees properly.

DM: What kind of damages could the victims and their families seek in a civil case?

BK: They could seek compensation for a variety of things, including medical expenses, therapy costs, pain and suffering, and emotional distress. In some cases, they may also be able to seek punitive damages, which are intended to punish the defendant and deter similar behavior in the future.

DM: Is there a time limit for filing a civil lawsuit in cases like this?

BK: Yes, there are statutes of limitations that vary by state and type of case. In Pennsylvania, for example, the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse cases is typically extended to allow victims more time to come forward. However, it's still important to consult with an attorney as soon as possible to ensure that your rights are protected.

DM: Thank you, Brian, for taking the time to share this with us.

BK: You're welcome, Darla. If anyone has questions or concerns about a potential case, I encourage them to reach out to a qualified attorney who has experience handling child sex abuse cases.

Free Consultation: We're Here to Support You

If you or a loved one have been affected by the alleged incidents of sexual abuse on a school bus, we encourage you to reach out to us for a free consultation. Our dedicated team is here to provide support, guidance, and legal expertise to help you navigate this challenging situation. You don't have to face this alone. Contact us today to discuss your case and explore the options available to you. Your voice matters, and we are committed to fighting for justice on your behalf.


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Darla Medina
About Darla Medina
Editor: Darla is a content writer with a focus on the legal field. She covers cases of sexual abuse, drunk driving, and preventable violent crime for the Legal Herald. Contact Darla: This article was fact checked prior to publishing by this author to ensure compliance with our rigorous editorial standards. We will only use authoritative sources. Our values compel us to provide only trustworthy information. If you find an error, please contact us.
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