According to the Patch, a former teacher at Ocean City High School has been arrested for sexual assault charges. Ricardo Valle, 34-years-old, has been charged for sexually assaulting a student.
Valle allegedly sexually assaulting a student in 2016 while he was an employed teacher at Ocean City High School. The charges came after an investigation conducted by the Cape May County Prosecutor's Office Special Victims Unit and the Ocean City Police Department.
Valle has been charged with second-degree sexual assault, second-degree official misconduct, second-degree endangering the welfare of a child, and fourth-degree criminal sexual contact reported the Patch.
Attorney contributor Brian Kent has represented numerous victims of sexual assault in civil lawsuits. Below, Brian provides his thoughts on the legal rights of victims sexually assaulted by a teacher.
"When parents send their children to school, they trust the staff and administration to provide a safe learning environment for the students. Unfortunately, we have seen numerous cases across the country where teachers and school employees have abused their positions of power and exploited students. Schools have a legal obligation to provide a safe environment for students. To ensure a safe learning environment, schools should implement security measures like background checks, reporting systems, guards, and cameras."
"When a student is sexually assaulted by a teacher, the victim, and their family should question if the school did their best to prevent the assault. If a school did not provide adequate safety measures to the students, they could be considered a liable third party. A school would be considered liable due to their negligence. One example of negligence is if a prior complaint was made against a teacher, but the school ignored it. In negligence cases, victims and their families should know they may have grounds for a civil lawsuit."