Crime

A Pasco school security guard and a paraeducator are accused of sex with a student

Two former employees at Chiawana High School are under investigation for having a sexual relationship with a student.
Two former employees at Chiawana High School are under investigation for having a sexual relationship with a student. Tri-City Herald

Two Pasco school employees have resigned after being accused of sexual misconduct with the same Chiawana High School student.

A former security guard, Darrell Thomas Palomo, 34, of Pasco, and an unnamed paraeducator are accused of having sex with the now 17-year-old girl.

Palomo is being held in the Franklin County jail on a 72-hour investigative hold for first-degree sexual misconduct. The other man is being sent a summons to show up in court.

Pasco Sgt. Scott Warren said the paraeducator’s alleged crime is older, making it less likely he will run.

Investigators learned first about the paraeducator’s alleged sexual contact with the girl. After they split up, Palomo is accused of beginning to text her during the summer after her sophomore year.

Court records show Palomo started talking with her in person near her home and the relationship became more intense. “Their communication eventually evolved into developing feelings for one another; she claimed to have fallen in love with Palomo,” said court documents.

He allegedly bought her jewelry and clothing and gave her money.

Both men had sexual contact with the student off the Chiawana campus, said Pasco police, which launched a joint investigation with the school district this week.

Chiawana school officials learned about the allegations Sept. 4 and contacted police Sept. 10.

School officials said the men had resigned before the allegations came to light.

“At this point, no other students have been identified, or have come forward with additional information or allegations,” said school district officials. “While we make no judgments of guilt at this time, if true, the allegations represent a breach of trust and a disappointing departure from our standards for district employees.”

Officials remain focused on making sure students are safe, the district said.

Police and the district are sure that no one else is at risk, but anyone with additional information about this or any other incidents are asked to call Pasco police at 509-628-0333.

Cameron Probert: 509-582-1402; Twitter: @cameroncprobert
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