UPDATE: More than 100 charges filed against Sioux Center teacher
UPDATE: A Sioux Center teacher is facing dozens of more charges of sexual abuse of children, just weeks after being charged with abusing a student last month.
35- year- old Curtis Van Dam was initially charged with Lascivious Acts with a Child and Lascivious Conduct with a Minor.
Now authorities are charging him with 72 counts of 2nd degree sexual abuse, 14 counts of sexual exploitation by a teacher, 12 counts of 3rd degree sexual abuse and 34 counts of lascivious conduct with a minor.
These charges all stem from investigations into Van Dam's conduct at Sioux Center Christian School following last month's allegations.
Police say the earliest conduct in these charges dates back to August of 2013 and that additional charges are still possible.
Sioux Center Police Chief says that the alleged violations occurred at various locations, including the Sioux Center Christian School and involved numerous children.
A Statement from Josh Bowar, Head of Sioux Center Christian School, reads in full:
"We have been told from the beginning that additional charges for a former teacher at Sioux Center Christian would be coming. Today, Mr. Curt Van Dam, was charged with 101 felonies and 39 misdemeanors. We have been informed that he was arrested this afternoon.
On Oct 18, within hours of hearing a complaint, school officials removed Mr. Van Dam from the school and immediately contacted authorities. His employment was terminated on Oct 19 and we have been in full cooperation with civil authorities since. This case is in the hands of our criminal justice system and we trust that justice will be served.
Though the number of charges do not necessarily reflect the number of students, we are grieved again as we hear the extent of the charges. We’ve wept, now it’s time to weep again. We’ve prayed, now we need to continue praying. We’ve brought our anger and fears to the Lord, and now we need to lay those feelings again at His feet.
We need to remember that though the charges are many, it also means that many students are no longer carrying secrets. Kids, we want you to know that we consider you brave for telling your parents, the police, and the interviewers what happened to you. We praise God that your testimony has brought to light a dark secret that none of us adults knew was there. You have played an important role in keeping others safe.
Please know that thousands are lifting you before the throne of your Father in heaven… trust Him to restore you completely.
Our focus at Sioux Center Christian continues to be the Christ-centered education of our students, while also providing daily support and guidance to students as needed through their teachers and professional counselors. Tonight at 6:30, there will be a group session for parents with All Things New Therapy Services at our school. Next Wednesday, Nov. 15, we will have a parent/5th – 8th grade student opportunity with Pastor Aaron & Nicole Baart at our school. We are planning additional specialized support for our students in the months ahead and for as long as it takes.
If this news especially hurts because you have suffered or are suffering abuse, we encourage you to bring it out of the realm of secrecy, so that it loses its powerful grip on you. We encourage you to talk to a professional Christian counselor.
We know hearing these new charges is incredibly painful and heartbreaking, but we need to be reminded again that we are walking this road of pain, so that another child need not. In the midst of this hurt, we proclaim hope. Hope in our sovereign God, who is so very trustworthy and true in His promises of life and healing. He gave His only Son, who lived as one of us, died on the cross, rose again, and reigns on high, so that we could enjoy eternal life in Christ’s unfolding Kingdom.
As a community of people bound together by our love and care for kids, let us persevere through the trials that lay before us. This will be an enduring process but we rest in our Living Hope, Jesus Christ. Let’s continue to pray and encourage one another. We have been overwhelmed by the love and support shown by our entire community and beyond …you have done more for us than words can define. Be assured that God is good and He is at work mightily in this school. Thank you for your continued prayers and support."
A Sioux Center teacher has been arrested and charged with lascivious acts with a child.
According to Sioux Center Police Chief, Paul Adkins, the Sioux Center Police Department has arrested and charged Curtis Van Dam, 35, Sioux Center, Iowa, with Lascivious Acts with a child/a Class C Felony, and Lascivious Conduct with a minor, a serious misdemeanor.
A complaint was filed with the Sioux Center Police Department on October 18th of alleged inappropriate conduct between Van Dam, a teacher at the Sioux Center Christian School and a student attending the school.
Upon investigation a search warrant was issued and executed on October 21st.
The charges state that the defendant allegedly committed a lascivious act with a child on October 17th and lascivious conduct with a minor approximately 3 weeks earlier.
Van Dam was arrested and transported to the Sioux County Jail.
The investigation into further allegations continues and additional charges are anticipated.