A Noble High School bus monitor has been charged with molesting a 13-year-old girl over a two-year period.
Kyle Matthews, 23, of Cornish, Maine, a Maine School Administrative District #60 bus monitor, was arrested and charged with gross sexual assault last week.
York County Sheriff Bill King said it’s an ongoing investigation so he cannot offer much detail. His office is investigating because the alleged offenses took place in Cornish, a town where police service is provided by the county.
“These types of things, when it’s sensitive we make sure it’s a very thorough investigation,” King said.
The investigation began in December, but Matthews was not fired until last week when Noble High School
Superintendent Steven Connolly was made aware of the issue.
Connolly sent a letter home to parents and posted it on the school district’s Facebook page that Matthews was arrested and charged with gross sexual assault.
According to Connolly, Matthews worked as a part-time monitor on a small bus with only two students and was never alone with students. He also said the district ran the required background check on Matthews prior to his employment and there was no criminal history.
Connolly said on Monday that an interview he gave to WCSH television station in Portland caused some concern and prompted calls to the North Berwick Police department. In the interview Connolly said he appeared to be critical of investigators, but he said that is not the case at all.
“I’m concerned that my words could cast any aspersion on the North Berwick Police Department at all,” Connolly said. “It is not even their case, they don’t have jurisdiction over it so the furthest thing from my mind was that police didn’t do what they should have done.”
Connolly said he works with police agencies on a regular basis and understands they have to follow guidelines and share information as soon as legally can.
“Unfortunately the last half of my conversation was left out of the news report and so some citizens in North Berwick had contacted the police chief to say what’s the matter with the police department and how come the SRO (school resource officer) isn’t working with the school?” Connolly said.
“I want to make it very clear it is really quite the opposite. We have a great working relationship between the administration and Officer (Rick) Varney and the high school and Officer (Milton) Fogg at the middle school.”
Connolly said school resource officers play a vital role and he wouldn’t want any resident to think less than that.
“What is really important is that the students look at these individuals quite differently than they do a regular police officer,” Connolly said. “While we want to engender trust with all officers, school resource officers are just a little bit different breed, they have a special skill set that they use in that position.”