After a three-month investigation, St. Johns County police discovered that seven additional children were victims of sexual abuse by Anthony Guadalupe after reviewing months of surveillance tapes from Chappell Schools, located at 8400 Baycenter Road, Jacksonville, Florida. Anthony Guadalupe, age 19, was arrested in August 2022 on a felony charge of lewd and lascivious behavior on a child younger than 12 years old, according to an arrest report from the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office. Guadalupe now faces 12 counts of lewd and lascivious molestation and two counts of lewd exhibition in connection with children who all attended Chappell Schools. Reports also show that Guadalupe wasn’t fired from Chappell School until over a month after his arrest.
Former Teacher Anthony Guadalupe’s Arrest
According to media reports, on June 9, 2022, a child told her father that Guadalupe put a toy in her underwear at the school on Longleaf Pine Parkway. The report shows the school reviewed surveillance footage with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office and saw the incident was captured on video. In the video, according to the report, Guadalupe could be seen putting his hands under the girl’s dress while in a classroom at the Chappell Schools’ Longleaf Campus. Guadalupe was arrested and initially charged with one count of lewd and lascivious molestation on a child younger than 12 years old. He was booked in the St. Johns County jail and released after a judge ordered Guadalupe’s bond set at $100,000. That same judge reviewed the surveillance and revoked the bond, sending him back to jail.
The Investigation of Anthony Guadalupe
St. Johns County investigators combed through surveillance cameras between May and June. The footage identified seven other child victims and prompted additional charges against Guadalupe. Between June 9 and Guadalupe’s arrest on July 18, three additional children were molested, according to the formal charging document filed by the State Attorney’s Office. That document says 12 children total were molested, and two witnessed sexual abuse. There were 14 separate incidents that were recorded in the classroom. Nine parents previously filed a civil lawsuit related to those allegations against Chappell School. Another lawsuit was just filed by the parents of another child against the school, alleging a different assistant teacher touched their child’s “breasts, genitals, genital area or clothing covering them” between November and December 2021“ The new lawsuit also reveals that Anthony Guadalupe continued working at Chappell School for more than a month after the school was shown screenshots of sexual abuse. Investigators believe there could be more. Guadalupe could now face 25 years to life in prison.
Schools are educational institutions in which children should be able to learn and develop skills in a nurturing environment. They are expected to be safe from violence, bullying, harassment, and sexual abuse. Teachers and coaches are entrusted to facilitate learning and support the educational needs of their students. Someone who sexually violates young children has no place working in the school system. Any school in which such a crime is committed should take responsibility if they fail to properly screen potential teachers and protect their students.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse in schools and other educational settings. If you or a loved one was sexually abused, raped, or sexually molested by a principal, teacher, or another school employee, contact our law firm at 888-283-9922 or send an e-mail to sexual abuse lawyer Adam Horowitz, at [email protected] for a free consultation.