Regis AD, teacher charged with repeated sexual assault of a child
56-year-old Jonathan Jarocki was charged in Eau Claire County Circuit Court Thursday.
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - The athletic director at Regis Catholic Schools, who is also a teacher there, is charged with repeated sexual assault of a child Thursday.
56-year-old Jonathan Jarocki was charged with repeated sexual assault of the same child and child enticement with sexual contact, both with enhancers of being a violent crime in a school zone, as well as causing mental harm to a child, according to online court records.
Jarocki was taken into custody Tuesday by the Eau Claire Police Department.
According to documents filed with the charges in Eau Claire County Circuit Court, Jarocki allegedly assaulted a then-sixth grade student on the Regis Middle School campus in 2018 on multiple occasions. The girl, who is now a teenager, was a student in Jarocki’s math and science classes at the time.
Jarocki repeatedly denied the allegations during his interview with investigators. During the interview, Jarocki couldn’t recall the girl’s name and was adamant that nothing took place. When he was asked why a student would make these accusations, Jarocki said that he didn’t know, according to the criminal complaint.
Jarocki was suspended by the administration at Regis Catholic Schools pending the outcome of the investigation. In a letter sent to parents, Paul Pedersen, President of Regis Catholic Schools, said that Jarocki had cleared all of his background checks when he was hired in 2014 and again when the most recent check was done in August of 2020, and that no previous incidents were found in those reports that would indicate any concerns. Pedersen said that Regis is cooperating fully with authorities.
Jarocki was named Athletic Director at Regis Catholic Schools in 2019, and prior to that, coached football and basketball. Jarocki was teaching sixth grade science this school year, according to Regis’ website. Pedersen has taken over athletic director duties at the school during the investigation, according to the school’s listing in the WIAA School Directory.
The Diocese of La Crosse put out a statement following the incident, stating that “These allegations are grave, and words cannot fully express my sadness. My thoughts are first with the victim/survivor and all those affected by these allegations. Please join me as I pray for them. The Diocese of La Crosse encourages all victims of sexual abuse to come forward to report their allegations. The Diocese of La Crosse’s child protection procedures and policy are at https://diolc.org/safe-environment/library/.”
The repeated sexual assault charge is for at least three violations of 1st-degree sexual assault and is a Class B felony in Wisconsin, which carries a maximum prison sentence of 60 years upon conviction. The charge enhancers mean that the sentence can be increased by up to five years for each charge. All told, a conviction on all three counts carries a maximum sentence of 107 and a half years in prison with the enhancers and up to $125,000 in penalties, according to state statute.
Jarocki appeared in court Thursday morning for his initial appearance. He is being held at the Eau Claire County Jail.
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