Farragut Career Academy security guard accused of sexually assaulting underage student

By Chicago 4 Min Read

(WTTW News)(WTTW News)

A security guard at a Little Village high school has been removed and charged after allegedly assaulting an underage student with alcohol and sexually assaulting her.

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Farragut Career Academy High School security guard Romel Campoverde, 43, appeared in court Wednesday following his arrest on charges of felony sexual assault of a victim aged 13 to 17.

He was ordered to be held on a $100,000 D bond, meaning he must pay $10,000 to be released from custody.

According to Cook County prosecutors, Campoverde met the 15-year-old victim when he was a freshman in school. She allegedly gave her her Snapchat user name and they started communicating and meeting outside of school during her sophomore year.

Assistant State Attorney Anne McCord-Rodgers said Campoverde took the victim to a mall, bought her a pair of shoes and gave her $40 for a haircut, and later provided her with alcohol and he invited her to his house after prom.

Campoverde allegedly scheduled a meeting with the victim on June 25, 2023. He took her to a McDonald’s and then bought eight cans of a tequila-mixed drink, making the victim drink six of those cans while drinking two himself, he said McCord-Rodgers.

The victim became extremely intoxicated as Campoverde drove around 31st Street Beach where he allegedly attempted to kiss her and pull her shirt down, according to prosecutors. She then took her to an RV he had parked at 26th Street and South Blue Island Avenue, where she sexually assaulted her despite her pleas to stop, McCord-Rodgers said.

The victim got out of the RV and immediately called a friend to tell them what had happened, before Campoverde drove her to her home, according to McCord-Rodgers. The victim then told a school employee about the incident the following day, and Chicago police were notified.

Detectives who searched Campoverde’s RV recovered two of the victim’s distinctive snap nails and found towels and a blanket with an apparent bloodstain, McCord-Rodgers said. Campoverde was later arrested on Monday.

Farragut Principal Tonya Hammaker wrote a letter to parents and families last week, informing them that “one of our non-teaching staff has engaged inappropriately with a student.” Hammaker said the employee had been removed from the school and the Chicago Public Schools Inspector General’s Office had launched an investigation into the matter.

“Please know that we are taking this situation seriously and remain committed to providing your children with a safe and positive learning environment in which they can reach their full potential,” Hammaker wrote in the letter.

During Wednesday’s hearing, Judge Ankur Srivastava said the victim appeared to view Campoverde as a father figure and that her actions leading to the alleged assault “in my view constitute solicitation.”

“This was not a one-time lapse in judgment,” Srivastava said. “It seems to me a premeditated crime scheduled for June 25, 2023”.

Campoverde is expected to return to court for a hearing on August 8.

Contact Matt Masterson: @ByMattMasterson | [email protected] | (773) 509-5431

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