Santa Maria Sun / News
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [santamariasun.com] - Volume 13, Issue 29
Trial continues for two St. Joe's administrators accused of failing to report alleged rape
BY JEREMY THOMAS
The alleged victim of a sexual assault involving two students at St. Joseph High School testified in court on Sept. 23 that she asked school administrators to keep the suspected incident from local law enforcement.
Jane Doe No. 1—as described in court documents—and her mother both took the stand in the trial of St. Joseph principal Joe Myers and former dean of students John Walker, who are accused of failing to report the alleged off-campus assault to police. The girl and her mother testified they met with the two administrators in September 2011.
The alleged victim’s mother told jurors that at the first meeting she asked Myers and Walker not to report the suspected rape to the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Department out of concern for protecting her daughter’s safety and to give her time to heal psychologically.
The 17-year-old girl also testified she told Myers and Walker on another occasion that she was “scared to death,” and that she would lie about the incident if the administrators reported it to police. She stated the alleged rape occurred at her parents’ home in the summer of 2011, and that after initially being too afraid to talk about it, she visited a local Planned Parenthood and the Rape Crisis and Child Protection Center for counseling.
Jane Doe No. 1 is one of two teenage students claiming to have been sexually assaulted by former St. Joseph classmate Shane Villalpando and another 16-year-old male student. Villalpando is also accused of raping a classmate who was 14 years old at the time, for which he is being tried separately.
The Santa Barbara County District Attorney’s Office has charged Myers and Walker, who are mandated reporters, with misdemeanor counts of failing to report a suspected sexual assault to authorities. Walker was fired from St. Joseph in the spring and is currently unemployed. Myers remains on administrative leave pending resolution of the matter.