Frisco police arrested a North Texas elementary school principal and charged him with online solicitation of a minor Tuesday afternoon.
Police took 46-year-old Oscar Figueroa into custody at Stonebriar Centre Mall in Frisco at about 3 p.m. Officers said he was communicating with detectives he thought were children.
"Anytime you have children involved it’s concerning," Frisco Police Department spokesman Chad LaPrelle said.
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Figueroa is the principal at Viridian Elementary School in the Hurst-Euless-Bedford Independent School District, which opened in the Viridian master-planned community in North Arlington last January. Before that, Figueroa was the principal at Hurst Hills Elementary School for two years.
District spokeswoman Judy Ramos said Figueroa has been placed on paid administrative leave while police investigate the incident.
In a telephone recording sent to parents of children at the elementary school, Steve Chapman, Superintendent of Schools for the district, said they were as taken aback as parents likely were to learn of Figueroa's arrest and that they are cooperating with the Frisco police in the investigation.
"Viridian Elementary is a top priority as we begin this new school year and as decisions are made concerning campus leadership we will keep you informed," Chapman said in the recording.
Rethsey Jasso’s daughter attended kindergarten last year at Viridian Elementary school, and will be in first grade there come August. Jasso said she would see Figueroa when walking her daughter to school, and he always greeted them.
“Very nice, super friendly, always said hi to us,” Jasso said.
She was shocked to receive an automated phone call from the school alerting parents to Figueroa’s request.
“Devastated, I just couldn’t believe it and very disturbed,” Jasso said. “I don’t know the details, but someone in that area should be held to a higher standard.”
Jasso said the arrest leaves her with a lot of questions.
“It really makes you think alright you really need to at a young kindergarten age discuss very adult topics, which is awful,” Jasso said.
Figueroa bonded out of Frisco City Jail Wednesday.
Police asked that anyone with information call them at 972-292-6010 or submit a tip by texting FRISCOPD and a message to TIP411 (847411).
"If anyone thinks they were a victim or if something doesn’t feel right and they have concerns, please talk to your kids," LaPrelle said.
NBC 5's Todd L. Davis, Jeff Smith and Jocelyn Lockwood contributed to this report.