H-SANTA MARIA

Sep 27, 2012 8:40 PM by Nikki Ibarra

Father of alleged victim in St. Joseph High School sexual assault case breaks silence

The father of one of the alleged victims in the St. Joseph High School sexual assault case sat down with KSBY's Nikki Ibarra Thursday.

Chris, whose last name KSBY is not reporting because his daughter is an alleged rape victim, said the principal and former dean of students at the Santa Maria high school are being wrongfully prosecuted.

Chris credits Joseph Myers and John Walker for saving his daughter's life.

Myers and Walker are charged with failure to report a child sexual assault to police.

The alleged victim, now 17, was a student at St. Joe's.

Two fellow students are charged with sexual assault.

"Let's start back at the beginning and if you're going to point the finger at one, point the finger at all of them, as well. Don't make charges when you're not even aware that we had been to law enforcement prior," said Chris.

Chris said he and his wife told Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department deputies about the alleged rape three days before talking to the school officials. He said his wife begged officers to not interview their daughter just yet, because of her emotional state, and that she would even lie if she was questioned.

"If the district attorney's office is saying that if the administration did was wrong for being mandated reports and not reporting, they have to also say that the sheriff's department did the same thing," added Chris.

The Santa Barbara County District Attorney's office told KSBY in July that administrators have to report these crimes because they are "mandated reporters".

"If they're convicted, their careers are done. They will no longer be able to teach. That's more than just a little misdemeanor crime," said Chris.

But Chris and his wife aren't the only one who said it's hard to see Myers and Walker on trial. He said it's exceptionally difficult for their daughter who, according to Chris, admires the two officials.

"Her mantra is that they saved my life. You know, coming from a 17 year-olds prospective whose been through what she has been through, that's the way she's seeing this and she's watching these men getting thrown down the river," said Chris.

KSBY called the sheriff's department for comment but no one was available.

Testimony in the trial continues Friday.

Santa Barbara County District Attorney Joyce Dudley told KSBY, "We won't comment outside of the courtroom on a pending case because we don't want to interfere with the jurors process. We will comment after the jury has completed their work."

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