A Sewanhaka High School security guard is fired and is now under investigation for a sexual assault that occurred with a 15-year-old girl.
According to the Special Victims Squad of the Nassau County Police Department, Daniel Valenzuela, 22, of Elmont, sexually assaulted a 15-year-old female while employed as a security guard at the high school. The incidents took place on multiple dates between June and October of 2019. After an extensive investigation, Valenzuela was located at his residence and placed under arrest on Dec. 5, at 12:40 p.m.
“A former security guard at Sewanhaka High School was arrested on Dec. 5,” Superintendent of Schools James Grossane said in a statement to the Illustrated News. “This individual had been vetted and cleared through all of the rigorous steps in our hiring process and we are appalled by these disturbing allegations. We have conducted our own internal investigation on this matter and at this time have found no evidence to suggest any criminal activity took place on school grounds. Student safety and security is and always will be the district’s top priority. As this is an ongoing investigation, the district cannot provide further details and will cooperate with the Nassau County Police Department in any way necessary.”
Valenzuela is charged with first- and third-degree criminal sexual act and was arraigned in the First District Court in Hempstead on Dec. 6.
Detectives are asking anyone with information about this crime or anyone who may have been victimized by Valenzuela to call the Special Victims Squad detectives at 516-573-4022 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-8477. All callers will remain anonymous.
Additionally, Grossane is continuing the tradition of hosting a superintendent’s advisory council, which was set by his predecessor Dr. Ralph Ferrie. The advisory council is comprised of students, nominated by their respective principals from Elmont Memorial High School, Floral Park Memorial High School, H. Frank Carey High School, New Hyde Park Memorial High School and Sewanhaka High School, who meet with the superintendent throughout the year and offer feedback and advice that may drive future decision-making district-wide. It remains to be seen whether or not school safety is brought up in future meetings.