According to AZ Family, 35-year-old George Cardenas allegedly had sexual relations with a minor student while employed as a teacher at North High School located at 1101 E Thomas Rd, Phoenix, AZ 85014.
On September 9, 2021, police arrested George Cardenas following accusations made by a former student of sexual misconduct from February 2012 until 2017. The victim reported that the two had a sexual relationship that started while the victim was only 16 years old and a junior at the high school, and the teacher was 25 years old. The relationship included daily sexual contact that took place at both Cardenas's residence and on school property, including the classroom closet. The victim moved in with Cardenas in July 2013, just two weeks before she turned 18, and lived there until the relationship ended in 2017.
Cardenas is currently a CTE and science teacher at Wilson College Prep located at 3005 E Fillmore St, Phoenix, AZ 85008. In 2018, he was awarded Teacher of the Year, in addition to other awards.
Our attorney contributor Kevin Biniazan is an experienced sexual abuse lawyer who represents victims and their families. During an interview, Kevin shared his knowledge on the legal rights of victims sexually abused by a teacher.
"Schools have a legal duty to maintain a safe environment for all children enrolled. Parents send their children to the school under the pretense that they can trust the children are provided a learning environment free of danger, such as sexual abuse. Unfortunately, there have been too many cases of teachers taking advantage of their positions of trust and sexually abusing a student in their care. The school can take preventative measures to deter these incidents from taking place., Schools can implement safety measures such as security cameras throughout the campus and by utilizing reporting systems. However, schools should run all employees through a mandatory background check that would allow them to see any previous misconduct."
"Victims that have suffered sexual abuse at the hands of a teacher should explore their legal rights in full. It is recommended to first consult with an experienced sexual abuse lawyer. Too often, when sexual abuse occurs, it is a result of the school's negligence. This may include the school's administration ignoring or failing to report previous misconduct complaints, creating an opportunity for the crime to occur again. If a school fails to implement proper security, it may be considered negligent. In these cases of negligence, victims and their families should be aware of the possible ability to file a civil lawsuit."