Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Mother of Chula Vista student calls former teacher's behavior "the ultimate betrayal"
Chula Vista Elementary School District has a history of covering up or ignoring safety issues. They need to create at least a rudimentary system of observations of teachers to protect children--and to improve education. Principals tend to spend most of their time with their favorite teacher friends. In my experience, many principals have a few teachers who spend large amounts of time in the principal's office, giving advice (or, in some cases, instructions) to the principal. These principals spend almost zero time observing the teachers who aren't part of their office furniture.
EXCLUSIVE: Mother of Chula Vista student calls former teacher's behavior "the ultimate betrayal"
By Derek Staahl
Apr 8, 2014
CHULA VISTA – The mother of a Chula Vista teen who testified that he was molested by his former second grade teacher is speaking out for the first time.
“It's the ultimate betrayal. He betrayed my son. He shamed him. He brought his whole life down,” the boy’s mother said. She agreed to speak with San Diego 6 on condition of anonymity.
The boy’s former teacher, 42-year-old John Raymond Kinloch, is behind bars awaiting trial on 44 felony counts, Deputy District Attorney Enrique Camarena said.
The San Ysidro man is accused of sexual misconduct with five boys. Of those, Kinloch is accused of physically molesting two of them, Camarena said. Most of the charges against Kinloch are connected to the former student, who is now 17.
“He took so much away from my son. Even though my son is strong and everything, I know that it's eating him up inside. It's eating me up inside,” the mother said.
The woman told San Diego 6 that she and her son viewed Kinloch “like a family member.” After Kinloch taught the boy in second grade at Feaster Charter School in 2003, they kept in touch and developed a close friendship. Over the next several years, Kinloch became a father figure for the boy, the mother said.
“He went to birthday parties, he went to family reunions, he took my son to games – basketball games,” she said. “When I had heart surgery, when I had cancer, I confided in him. I always looked at him, like ‘Wow, this guy -- he's like a dad to my son.’”
The woman said the student’s biological father left when the boy was about 3 years old.
Kinloch and the boy maintained a close relationship from 2003 until 2012, when he was first arrested on suspicion of child pornography after an investigation by the San Diego Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force. Once news of the arrest broke, the woman says her son opened up to her about what had happened over the last nine years.
“I said, ‘Did he ever touch you? Did he ever say anything inappropriate? Did he ever, you know, do anything?’ And he dropped his head. That's when I knew,” she said. She encouraged her son to go to the police, and he became the centerpiece of the criminal prosecution against Kinloch.
Kinloch is accused of improperly touching and kissing the boy, along with asking him to remove his clothes and taking pictures of him naked, according to court documents. Kinloch has pleaded not guilty to the charges. His trial has been delayed until August 25.
The woman has filed a lawsuit against the former teacher, the Chula Vista Elementary School District, and the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.
“Mr. Kinloch was in his classroom at school, disrobing this child with the door locked. That's negligent supervision in my mind,” Elaine Heine, the mother’s attorney, told San Diego 6.
The lawsuit, filed in August, also argues that the Chula Vista Elementary School District negligently hired Kinloch because he was a known distributor of child pornography.
In 1998, Kinloch agreed to testify in Great Britain about his involvement in a child pornography ring. In exchange for his testimony, the U.S. Attorney’s Office agreed to offer Kinloch immunity, and he was never charged, Camarena said. Kinloch was hired by the school district two years later.
“He should never have been a teacher. And I keep saying if he had never been a teacher, my son wouldn't have been going through this for the rest of his life,” the mother said.
The Chula Vista Elementary School District has filed a lawsuit against the federal Department of Justice, trying to determine why Kinloch’s background check raised no red flags.