An Oklahoma pre-school teacher was taken into custody Monday for allegedly sexually abusing a four-year-old girl.
The accused, identified as 27-year-old Christopher Ribertone, allegedly sexually assaulted the child in a bathroom at Childcare Network daycare four months ago when no one was around.
The daycare issued a statement Tuesday saying, “During the summer, we were notified of concern about a staff member at Childcare Network #202 in Oklahoma City. The safety and well-being of the children we serve is our top priority.”
“Our management immediately began an internal investigation. The teacher involved in this incident was suspended without pay upon notice of the concern and has been terminated. We notified the proper authorities and are cooperating fully with the investigation. We follow all state and federal requirements when hiring our employees, which include state and federal background checks,” the statement added.
The Oklahoma Department of Human Services was made aware of the incident following which an investigation was launched.
“They had received information that a 4-year-old victim reported to a parent that she had been sexually assaulted at a daycare,” Sgt. Megan Morgan, Oklahoma City Police Department, told CBS-affiliated television station KWTV.
Investigation revealed that the accused had allegedly molested a student at a New Jersey daycare three years ago. It was also revealed that the man was accused of covering students’ mouths with tape and binding their wrists at a school in Edmond, Oklahoma, two years ago.
As part of the current investigation, officers searched the accused’s home last month in order to get additional evidence. He was taken into custody Monday.
“He was arrested for that warrant yesterday and booked into the Oklahoma County Detention Center,” Morgan told KWTV, adding that he was booked on one count of lewd acts with a child.
The accused remained in prison as of Tuesday with his bond set at $100,000.
In a similar incident last year, a Pennsylvania daycare owner was arrested for sexually assaulting several children. He was charged with multiple offenses including felony rape of a child and sexual contact with a minor.