Former Jefferson High School teacher Michael Enneking, 34, was arrested on September 16 for allegedly sexually abusing a female student from the school.
Enneking’s arrest came after a months-long investigation. Rockford police were first notified of the sex abuse allegations involving the teacher and a student in April. Detectives determined that Enneking was the suspect and began their investigation.
According to investigators, Enneking allegedly sexually abused the victim on school property. There was also allegedly inappropriate contact between Enneking and the victim using electronic communications after school hours.
Police issues a warrant for Enneking’s arrest with a $500,000 bond. He has been arrested and is charged with four counts of aggravated criminal abuse, two counts of indecent solicitation of a child, grooming, and failure to report abuse of a child to DCFS.
Attorney contributor Brian Kent represents sex abuse victims and their families in civil lawsuits. As a school sexual abuse attorney, Brian understands how both the criminal justice and civil court systems can help these victims and families. Here are a few thoughts from Brian on the legal rights of school sex abuse victims and their families:
Our nation’s schools have widespread issues with students being sexually abused by staff members. Sadly, schools and other workplaces involving children are often targeted by sexual predators. These predators exploit their positions of trust and authority to commit heinous crimes.
School administrators have a legal duty to stay aware of the fact that sexual predators pose a danger to their students. Our schools must do everything they can to prevent these predators from being hired. Additionally, safeguards must be in place in order to reduce the risk of sexual abuse.
In some cases of school employee sex abuse, the abuse may have been prevented if not for negligence by the school. In such cases, the victims and their families may have grounds for a lawsuit against the school.
If you or a loved one has been sexually abused by a school employee, you can learn more about your legal rights by discussing your case with an experienced sex abuse victims attorney.