Christopher Falzone, the associate director of Camp Live Oak, is accused of molesting a 10-year old girl who attended the camp where he worked. Falzone is 35-years old. He is accused of molesting the camper on 15 occasions when the campers would go to the beach or while they were on the bus together. As is often the case with child sexual abuse, this does not appear to be an isolated incident by the alleged perpetrator. In 2013, Falzone was working as a substitute teacher at Sheridan Elementary School and four students reported that he inappropriately touched them. One of the families has filed a civil lawsuit against Falzone. At least one other child from Renaissance Charter School in Cooper City has accused Falzone of sexual misconduct. According to public records, Falzone was later charged with additional crimes involving alleged sexual contact with a minor in Cooper City.
The alleged victim at Camp Live Oak told police she was alone with Falzone because she had broken her arm earlier in the summer and was unable to participate in swimming so Falzone sat with her while the other campers swam at the beach. Camp Live Oak has two locations — Fort Lauderdale and Dania Beach.
During Falzone’s interview with police, they said he admitted to communicating with the victim on Facebook and whispering, “I love you” in her ear. However, he claimed he did not remember touching her. Falzone had worked at Camp Live Oak for eight years. His picture and biography were quickly removed from the camp’s website but his pictures remain on the camp’s Instagram account. Falzone is also a third-grade teacher at Renaissance Charter School in Cooper City. According to Falzone’s LinkedIn bio, he previously worked as the Music Director at Two Rivers Church in Cooper City between 2012 and Volunteer Coordinator at the Young At Art Museum in Davie for six months from 2013 to 2014; and was a substitute teacher at Sheridan Hills Elementary from November 2008 through June 2013.
The alleged molestation was revealed when the child’s mother found that her daughter was talking on her cell phone with an adult male. This resulted in further inquiry and discovery of inappropriate messages exchanged between Falzone and the minor.
Falzone’s arrest is a reminder that no matter how picturesque the camp looks in its brochures, the risk of childhood sexual abuse in summer camp exists and it occurs more often than most people realize. No matter what we do to protect our children, there is always a risk that they may be harmed when they are away from us. In most states, there are laws in place to keep sexual predators out of daycare centers and schools. Rarely do the same prohibitions apply in the summer camp setting.
It is also a reminder for adults to be vigilant in monitoring the cell phone and social media use of children. Parents should have access to and be aware of all messages exchanged by their children.
Attorney Adam Horowitz is experienced in representing victims of child sexual abuse at summer camps in civil lawsuits. If you or someone you know was a victim of child sexual abuse at any summer camp, please contact our law firm at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to sexual abuse attorney Adam Horowitz at [email protected]