Volunteer Controversy in Crete

By: Cole Miller

A man arrested for sexually assaulting a child, was volunteering at Crete High School. That's where his alleged victim saw him.

Administrators at Crete High School are facing quite the controversy.

“It's given her a place she doesn't feel safe anymore.”

Those are the words of a student's mother. We're not naming her in order to protect her daughter, who back in May, was allegedly sexually assaulted. The man charged with the sexual assault is 52–year–old Chad Eggebraaten, who was volunteering at the high school, according to school officials. They claim they were unaware of the charges against him.

The Saline County attorney's office says, as part of his bond, Eggebraaten was to have no contact with children under the age of 15.

“Now, she feels uncomfortable walking down the halls, worrying about what people are going to say to her. It just adds another layer of stress and anxiety around an already difficult situation.”

That difficult situation stems from what the mother says was failure to act by the administration. She says her daughter went to the principal as soon as she saw Eggebraaten at the school.

“Well we were worried about post traumatic stress reactions. I was asking, 'Are you sure you saw him?' She's like, 'Mom, not only did I see him, others saw him.”

The girl's mother says they then went to the superintendent's office. From there, Eggebraaten was told he could no longer volunteer at the school and Kyle McGowan, the superintendent, says it was a mistake and that the whole thing never should have happened.

He also released the following statement Monday:

“The safety and welfare of our students is a top priority of the Crete school district. We take all safety issues seriously and are committed to protecting all students and providing a safe and supportive learning environment”

McGowan says local law enforcement will continue their investigation and the county attorney's office says they have since revoked Eggebraaten's bond.

The Saline County attorney's office says Eggebraaten has pled not guilty to the charges of felony first-degree sexual assault. He will be back in court in early November.