Full Story: Iowa Teacher Facing 140 Counts Of Inappropriate Conduct
SIOUX CENTER, Iowa – An Iowa elementary teacher is facing 140 counts of inappropriate conduct with students. Police first arrested 35-year-old Curtis Van Dam at the end of October on two counts; lascivious conduct with minor and lascivious acts with a child. Now, Sioux Center Police are discovering similar incidents may have happened before.
With allegations dating back to August 2013, new details show Sioux Center Christian teacher Curtis Van Dam has been accused of having sexual conduct with students for years.
“I do not know the exact number right now, since this is an active investigation but I can say this involved numerous, numerous students,” says Sioux Center Police Chief Paul Adkins.
The first report came at the end of October from parents and school administrators. Then, others spoke out, too.
“All the victims were children,” says Adkins. “Iowa law states that anyone under the age of 14 is a child, so they were all under the age of 14.”
Police can’t go into the specifics of each alleged incident but say they happened both inside the school and out. Among the long list of charges Van Dam is facing includes 14 counts of sexual exploitation by a teacher, 34 counts of lascivious conduct with a minor and 72 counts of sexual abuse in the 2nd degree.
“It’s really shocked our community over here, our educational system, our religious community and the community in whole,” says Adkins. ”It’s taken a while to get through, but we are very confident in our investigation.”
And the investigation isn’t over yet.
“We’re still looking into further allegations,” says Adkins. “There are additional charges possible.”
Van Dam originally bonded out after being arrested the first time, but he is back behind bars at the Sioux County Jail.
“We have done our due diligence in the investigation,” says Adkins. ”The children are totally safe in that school system and all school systems in the community. We would like to continue to get through this, get beyond this, and go back to normal.”
Van Dam is a married father of two who was active in his local church. He taught at the Christian school for 13 years.