Columbia University VP Charged With Sexually Assaulting Minor

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Columbia University vice president Marcelo Velez is facing charges for allegedly sexually assaulting a child under 13.

According to a report from the New York Post, the 56-year-old was charged with aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault by contact.

Velez was also charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

In his role with Columbia University, Velez serves as a “point person on all aspects of development, design, and construction of the University’s 6.8 million sq. foot Manhattanville in West Harlem campus expansion.”

There is no word on what the relationship was between Velez and the child.

Over the course of the past year alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including 25-year-old substitute teacher Alexis Mercedes Boberg in Baltimore, Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teachers Meredith Null and Edna Longoria were arrested on similar charges.

As for why the number of these incidents has seemingly increased, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.

According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make it easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.

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