Families of children at a Corsicana elementary school are looking for answers after the arrest of a 3rd grade teacher, accused of indecency with a child.
District officials said Corsicana Independent School District Police arrested Ramon Santuario-Mendoza Monday.
Mendoza is a third grade English Language Arts teacher at Sam Houston Elementary School, according to Corsicana ISD. He's taught with the district since 2017. This week, district officials said they expanded their notification to families of 4th grade students who were taught by Mendoza last year.
"He was a 3rd grade teacher in 2017, then it's possible that students in the fourth grade class were affected," said Corsicana ISD spokesperson Susan Johnson.
The district sent letters home with 3rd grade students last week.
Tony Lozano Sr. said his granddaughter came home with a note in her folder. It explained her teacher was on leave pending an investigation, but the family said they didn't know it was criminal until they asked the 8-year-old girl.
Lozano said she described her teacher touching her chest area under her clothes.
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"It was not patting or high five or anything like that," said Lozano. "It was sexual. I still get a little lump in my throat when I think about it."
The district said an outcry was made by three students last week, alleging inappropriate touching by Mendoza. Those interviews with students resulted in police asking for an arrest warrant on one indecency with a child charge.
In a closed door meeting with families this week, district police told parents some of the other allegations did not rise to the level of a crime. Indecency with a child charges typically stem from sexual contact of genitals, the anus or breasts of a child.
There are no allegations of sexual assault, according to investigators.
As of Tuesday, Mendoza faces four counts of indecency with a child. District officials say 14 additional children from the 3rd and 4th grades are scheduled for forensic interviews with the Navarro County Children's Advocacy Center to determine if additional charges are appropriate.
Mendoza is on administrative leave during the investigation. The district said the school board may make a decision about Mendoza's contract the next time it meets on May 6.
Under normal circumstances, NBC 5 goes to great lengths to protect the identities of victims, or potential victims, of sexual assault. In this case, the child's family wanted to come forward and share their story so that others may be aware of the allegations against Mendoza.