JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WHAS11) - A Jeffersonville High School student is facing multiple felony charges for child molestation. Police said the incidents between Michael Begin Junior and two young girls happened at Thomas Jefferson Elementary on Tuesday.
Clark County Prosecutor Jeremy Mull said Begin Jr. worked as a teacher’s assistant at the school. On Tuesday, Begin Jr. was helping two six-year-old girls, at separate times, when the teen reportedly fondled them underneath their clothing. According to a probable cause affidavit, one of the incidents was caught on camera.
Mull said one of the victims told her parent that same day.
“A child at the end of her school day was picked up by her parent and immediately when she got in the car told her parent that she had been touched inappropriately. The parent then immediately exited the car and entered the school and informed the school administration of what happened, the police were called, and this investigation began, which resulted in this arrest and these charges,” Mull said.
The investigation started right after, using the victims’ interviews and surveillance footage. While this an incredibly difficult case, Mull said the quick timeline of this is rare.
“Unfortunately in many child molesting allegations the allegations come to light months or even years afterwards and it’s very difficult to investigate and prosecute and it’s very difficult on the victims to shoulder the burden of that abuse for months or years on their own in silence, privately, without any type of support. So, it is a good thing in this case that it came to light immediately, the day of, that we were immediately able to move on that. The victims are able to get support and were able to take action to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” Mull said.
Mull said this is just the beginning and he expects to file additional charges in this case. He said he's aware of multiple potential other victims at the school as well as a possible incident at the YMCA where Begin Jr. reportedly worked.
“That’s one of the incidents that’s under investigation at this time. I don’t have the full results of that investigation at this time so I don’t want to speak on that but I can tell you that that’s one of the incidents that’s being looked at by the police department to review to determine whether any additional charges are warranted based on anything that may have happened there,” Mull said.
Begin Jr. bailed out of jail Wednesday and has a court date on October 23 at 1:00 p.m.
Mull said he plans to increase his bond to $100,000 cash only at that hearing.
“It is my belief that in a case such as this that a high cash only bond is appropriate for the protection of the community, and that’s what we’ll be asking for at the next court appearance,” Mull said.
If that's not granted, he tells us he will request Begin Jr. be put on the home incarceration program.