HOUSTON — The former KIPP Explore Academy counselor accused of molesting an 8-year-old girl multiple times in his school office has been released from jail on bond, the Houston Police Department confirmed Friday morning.
Brandon Thomas McElveen, 33, is charged with indecency with a child. He was taken into custody in Victoria County, and his bail was set at $50,000.
The victim, a second grade student, reportedly told investigators McElveen forced her to touch him sexually while in the ex-counselor’s office on Sept. 26. However, court documents said McElveen had removed the child from class at least five times before that incident under the excuse he was inspecting her for “bites” and “lice.”
During the sessions, none of which were documented as counseling sessions, investigators said McElveen would bring the student into his office and close the door. Once inside, court documents said he would touch the student inappropriately and sometimes remove her clothes.
The victim told authorities that she would ask him to stop, but McElveen refused, according to a police report.
HPD said McElveen did not make notations about the inspections in the nurse’s records.
It’s unclear how many times the victim was brought to McElveen’s office.
In a police report, one teacher stated the student was removed from her class at least five times. Another teacher reportedly told investigators the child was removed from his class multiple times without a reason, and she would be gone with McElveen for a long time. A third teacher also came forward saying the student was removed from her class multiple times.
McElveen has since been fired from his position at the school, according to a letter sent to parents on Wednesday.
Superintendent Sehba Ali of KIPP Houston Public Schools released the following statement regarding the indecency charges:
I and the entire KIPP Houston leadership team want you to know that we are treating this situation with the
utmost seriousness. We are doing everything we can to support our students, families and staff, and to ensure
all members of our KIPP community feel safe and secure.
We recognize that members of our KIPP Explore and KIPP Intrepid community may need additional support
in the coming days and weeks. KIPP counselors will be available on campus to provide assistance to any
students or staff who need it.
We currently have a number of practices and policies to promote a safe environment across KIPP Houston
Public Schools. We have specific policies in place, outlined in our staff handbook, to prevent any inappropriate
contact between staff and students. We have a rigorous background check process for new employees through
an FBI data base with continuous monitoring.
We also conduct regular, mandatory training for all KIPP Houston employees through Stewards of Children, a
Texas state-approved program aimed at preventing child sexual abuse. We have protocol for staff, students,
and families to report suspected abuse, and we have programs in place for supporting students and their
families when they come forward.
Although we believe that our current policies meet the highest standards, we conduct regular review of these
practices to promote student safety in our schools.
Thank you for joining us in ensuring that our school community is a safe place. As always, please contact me
or your school leaders directly if you have any questions.
The school also asks that anyone with information regarding the allegations call HPD at 713-830-3265.