COALGATE, OK -- A Coalgate teacher accused of committing sex crimes against a child is out of jail on a $100,000 dollar bond. Kristen Shanahan spoke with investigators and concerned parents Tuesday.
Coal County Sheriff Bryan Jump says they arrested 32-year-old William Jason Pinkston at his home Monday. He is charged with sexually abusing a child under the age of 12. Investigators say the crimes he's accused of did not happen on school grounds.
"It's very shocking for the community for them to know, or to think that one of the teachers could be a predator in the school. It is shocking, and that's why the sheriff's office, we've done due diligence to do everything we can," Sex Crimes Investigator Nicholas Davis said.
Coal County authorities say they arrested William Pinkston Monday evening, a week after receiving allegations that he had sexually abused an elementary student.
"It was brought to us by the school. Some of the school teachers informed us of it," Sheriff Bryan Jump said.
According to an affidavit, Pinkston allegedly exposed himself multiple times to the child and touched her inappropriately.
"He had one count of child sexual abuse which entailed several different incidents," Davis said.
Authorities say Pinkston is a science teacher at Coalgate High School. Coalgate Public Schools Superintendent Jim Girten released this statement to News 12.
"The safety of our students is a top priority. We do everything in our power to protect them from harm. When we became aware of the allegations we immediately contacted DHS and law enforcement. We have been and will continue to be fully cooperative with them in this matter. As of 2-4-13 Mr. Pinkston has been on paid administrative leave. I cannot comment further because it is a confidential employment matter."
"As I continue to investigate there's absolutely no indication that any of the children at the school were at any harm," Davis said.
Scott Wright, parent of two elementary students, says he is concerned.
"If it is true well of course I'd be worried that any pedophile or predator would be having access to the girls," Wright said.
However, he says he is not going to jump to conclusions.
"There's plenty of things that happen in this world where people are falsely accused so lets let the courts work instead of a lynch mob," Wright said.
The investigation is ongoing.
"For the most part it's all wrapped up, but we continue to take on anymore leads," Davis said.
Superintendent Girten says Pinkston has worked for the school since August of 2009. Investigators say Pinkston had no prior criminal record. We reached out to Pinkston's attorney for comment Tuesday and have yet to hear back from him.
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