Police arrested a special education teacher in Oakland Gardens on Wednesday after he was allegedly caught sexually abusing one of his students on school property.
According to reports, 48-year-old Marc Scheibel from P4 Queens (P4Q) allegedly forced a 9-year-old autistic student to “rub his groin through his sweatpants” and touch his buttocks. A co-worker alerted the school principal who then called the police.
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said that another person in the classroom allegedly captured the incident on camera.
“The victim in this case is a defenseless child with autism. The defendant — trusted teacher in our school system — is alleged to have taken advantage of both his position and the little girl’s innocence. Our children must always be protected from predators. The defendant will be held accountable for his alleged actions,” said Katz.
Katz said that the alleged video recording shows Scheibel pulling the child’s hand under the table toward his groin. Later on in the video, Scheibel points toward his groin, where the young girl puts her hand for a period of time.
“This alleged behavior is completely unacceptable and we immediately reassigned this teacher away from the classroom because of this deeply disturbing allegation. He will not have any interaction with students,” said DOE spokesperson Danielle Filson.
P4Q is a District 75 school co-located within the building of P.S. 213 and serves students from Pre-K to 8th grade who are severely emotionally challenged, on the autism spectrum or who have intellectual disabilities.
The DOE sent letters home families from both P4Q and P.S. 213 to inform them of the incident.
Story updated at 4:49 p.m.