A 34-year-old police officer in Watervliet, New York faces several felony counts of criminal sex acts against a 16-year-old girl he met while serving as a school protection officer, WNYT-TV reported.
Investigators said Joshua Spratt met the girl while working at Watervliet High School, and engaged in the illegal activity at two nearby cemeteries, as well as a local parking lot. An order of protection has been filed for the girl.
Spratt also allegedly carried out the same type of behavior with a 17-year-old girl from the same school. She was not included in the charges because she is able to consent under state law. However, authorities also issued orders of protection for her and a 17-year-old witness.
Albany County District Attorney David Soares said that prosecutors have amassed evidence against the officer including phone and text messages, as well as video footage.
“Right now, the emotion that an entire community is going to be going through is one of outrage,” Soares told the Albany Times-Union. “What I’m hoping for as a result of this dialogue is that this community does come together — and if there are other victims out there that we create an environment where those people can come forward.”
If the allegations against Spratt are confirmed, local school superintendent Lori Caplan said, they represent “an egregious betrayal of trust.”
“We welcomed somebody into our school whose role was to keep our students safe,” she said. “And if these allegations are true, he played upon that role and upon his power and position, for lack of a better term. And I take that very personally.”
Spratt, an Army reserves veteran who has served in Iraq, was first assigned to the school in September 2013. He could face between 5 and 1/3 and 16 years in prison on the felony charges, and is also accused of child endangerment and official misconduct, two misdemeanors. He is currently free after posting $50,000 bail.
Watch WNYT’s report, as aired on Monday, below.
George Floyd’s brother leads protest crowd in emotional prayer at the site of his brother’s death
George Floyd's brother Terrence led protesters in a tearful prayer at the makeshift memorial that has been set up at the site of his brother's death in Minneapolis.
He begged the crowd for calm as protesters around the world have marched in solidarity with those demanding justice.
Linking arms with friends and family, Mr. Floyd shouted down the crowd asking, "what are y'all doing?" Saying that breaking down businesses and setting things on fire isn't going to bring his brother back. He explained that he's more upset than anyone, but "if I'm not wilding out" others shouldn't either.
Kentucky man killed by law enforcement during George Floyd protest had provided police officers with free meals
In a heartbreaking story, police shot and killed David McAtee, the owner of a barbecue business, Yaya’s BBQ, in western Louisville, Kentucky early Monday morning.
He was known for being a "community pillar," his mother, Odessa Riley, said, according to the Currier-Journal.
She also recalled that her son would give free meals to law enforcement from his barbecue business.
"He fed them free," Riley said. "He fed the police and didn't charge them nothing."
Fox News tells viewers to make citizen’s arrests: ‘Take some zip ties and subdue some of these people’
Fox News host Kennedy Montgomery on Monday encouraged viewers to take the law into their own hands when it comes to the protests that have broken out over the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
On Fox News' Outnumbered program, Montgomery said that "peaceful protesters" had a responsibility to weed out violent actors.
"You're seeing [protest group Antifa] really capitalize on this," Montgomery said of the nationwide protests. "They may not make up the majority but they're hellbent on doing so much damage. And it is heartening to see other protesters sort of shovel them to the police."