A now-fired teacher at Bethpage High School on Long Island has been arrested for allegedly sexually abusing a student while he was teaching at the school.
28-year-old Joseph Gallagher is charged with two counts of sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of a child. He is accused of having sexual contact with an underage female student during his time as a teacher at Bethpage High School.
According to the authorities, the school was notified of a possible incident involving Gallagher and the student. They reportedly contacted police after receiving this information.
Gallagher was arrested on Wednesday, June 19, and arraigned last Friday, June 21.
Detectives with the Nassau County Police Department have asked any other possible victims to contact the Nassau County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-TIPS or the Special Victims Squad at (516) 573-4022.
Attorney contributor Laurence Banville represents victims of sexual abuse in title IX sexual abuse lawsuits. Here are a few of his thoughts regarding the legal options available to teacher sex abuse victims and their families:
Schools should be safe spaces for our kids. But sadly, schools and other workplaces where adults work with kids are often targeted by sexual predators. These predators exploit the trust of their communities in order to commit terrible crimes against children. When a teacher or other school employee sexually abuses a student, it’s important both to prosecute the perpetrator and determine if any third parties were negligent in a way that enabled the abuse to happen.
For example, some cases of sexual abuse involving school employees are preventable and only occur due to negligence by the school district, such as failing to run background checks before hiring employees or ignoring previous complaints of sexual misconduct by a staff member.
In cases of negligence, school sex abuse victims and their families could have grounds for a lawsuit against the school. If your child is a survivor of sexual abuse by a teacher or another school staff member, you can learn more about your family’s legal options in a free consultation with an experienced sex abuse victims lawyer.