At public meeting, CCSD trustee discloses he was victim of child rape

Updated August 10, 2018 - 11:31 pm

In the midst of an at-times heated debate over the Clark County School District’s gender diversity policy, Trustee Kevin Child made a highly personal disclosure in an effort to illustrate his support for strengthening the state’s anti-bullying law rather than putting new rules on the books for transgender and other students.

He said he had been raped as a child.

The comment came at a packed School Board meeting Thursday as Child sought to explain his opposition to the new district policy aimed at providing guidance for principals and schools to ensure the safety and well-being of students with diverse gender expressions. The trustee, who is locked in a tight re-election race, ultimately cast one of three dissenting votes as the board approved the policy by a 4-3 vote.

“I have many parents in my district that have called me, and a lot of them, they don’t hate transgender kids. They don’t hate different kids,” Child said during the meeting.

“We have to understand each others’ kids and get along with each other. I was bullied as a child. I was raped as a child. I don’t blame anybody, but I’m here to help to fix the problems that are wrong in this world.”

Accosted by neighbor

Child reiterated the rape allegation Friday in an interview with the Review-Journal, saying he was sexually assaulted by an older male neighbor when he was 6 years old and living in Illinois. He said he didn’t tell anyone at the time because the neighbor threatened to take Child away from his parents.

The 56-year-old trustee said he also suppressed the occurrence. It was only when he underwent hypnotherapy at age 38 that he remembered the trauma, he said, since he had “shoved it so far down.”

Child said that because he had been raped and because he had attention deficit disorder and dyslexia as a student, he was constantly bullied. And there was no special protection for him, which is why he believes that a special policy for transgender children is not necessary and that the state anti-bullying law should be enforced better to protect all children.

“We need to protect the bullying policy before we add something else to it. Every single child is covered by that bullying policy,” he said.

New policies won’t fix problems the students are facing, he added.

“We have laws that tell people they can’t speed. We tell people you can’t drink. The laws are there to protect people, but people don’t listen to them,” he said. “You just add a transgender policy, but people aren’t going to listen to that.”

For some in the audience, Child’s comment came without context, leaving them wondering why he chose to make the personal disclosure at the meeting.

“It didn’t seem like something we expected him to say or something that seemed fitting for the audience. I couldn’t tell you why he decided that was the moment to bring it up,” said Cassie Charles, a field organizing specialist for Planned Parenthood.

Previous concerns

Concerns have been raised about Child’s behavior since April 2014, according to documents obtained by the Review-Journal. Staff members wrote to district officials after Child began having impromptu suicide talks with children in schools.

The reports obtained so far — the Review-Journal is suing the school district for a full disclosure of records — also include reports that Child commented on the “sexiness” of an employee’s clothing and confronted an administrator after high school football players knelt during the national anthem at a football game.

Child has repeatedly said he has never done anything to make people uncomfortable, even after trustees settled a sexual harassment complaint lodged against the district over his behavior by former Deputy Superintendent Kim Wooden. The settlement included a provision changing Wooden’s contract so she wouldn’t have to work on board projects or could work from home.

After the settlement, Child threatened to sue the school district, although no lawsuit has yet been filed.

Charles also said that Child’s use of his personal story to argue that transgender students don’t need protections employed false logic.

“Transgender students are the most vulnerable right now,” she said. “They need these protections, and if any other student group needs protections, they should get a policy as well.”

Deborah Earl, vice president of Power2Parent, a group that was outspoken in opposing the new policy because they said it would take away parental rights, said she watched from home and did not hear the remark.

Informed of it Friday, she expressed empathy while also drawing connections to the gender diversity policy.

“I feel sorry for any child who has been through that,” she said. “I think these issues bring up past experiences that might have been hurtful. I think a lot of people are reflecting on their own experience and thinking this (policy) isn’t going to work for them.”

A previous version of this article incorrectly identified the party named in former Deputy Superintendent Kim Wooden’s sexual harassment complaint.

Contact Meghin Delaney at 702-383-0281 or Follow @MeghinDelaney on Twitter. Review-Journal staff writer Amelia Pak-Harvey contributed to this report.

News Videos
Jim Foley talks about 30 years of living HIV-positive
Jim Foley, who was diagnosed as HIV positive 30 years ago, talks at his home in Las Vegas on Wednesday, March 13, 2019. (Chase Stevens/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Traffic Slows to a Crawl on I-15S Near Primm
Traffic slowed to a crawl around 2:30p Sunday, on I-15S near Primm, Nevada.
Homeless residents speak about safety
The homeless residents living at the corner of Owens Ave. and Main St. reflect on how they feel about their safety after two homeless men died, one was hit crossing the street and another was beat to death by another homeless man. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
CCSD Superintendent address alleged racially motivated threats at Arbor View
CCSD Superintendent Dr. Jesus F. Jara gives update on alleged racially motivated threats against Arbor View High School, and says such threats will not be tolerated. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Super Bloom Near Lake Elsinore, California
Crowds packed the hills near Lake Elsinore on Saturday to capture a rare selfie amidst the super bloom of poppies turning the landscape purple. The super bloom was caused by the larger rainfall this year. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Fiery accident in Las Vegas
A three-car accident on Spring Mountain Road around 6:30 pm on Monday night
A bipartisan coalition holds simultaneous rallies to promote criminal justice
A bipartisan coalition holds simultaneous rallies to promote criminal justice. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Stardust implosion anniversary
Twelve years ago today, the Stardust Resort and Casino was imploded. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
Lawsuits filed against security contractors at Nevada National Security Site
Two lawsuits were filed today against the current and former government security contractors for the Nevada National Security Site, one on behalf of Jennifer Glover who alleges sexual discrimination and assault and the other on behalf of Gus Redding who alleges retaliation after he gave statements supporting Glover’s claims. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
New housing option helps Las Vegas moms keep kids while kicking drugs
WestCare Nevada Women and Children’s Campus in Las Vegas has added a new transitional housing wing for women who have completed the inpatient treatment at the behavioral health nonprofit to help them as they go through outpatient treatment, shore up their finances and prepare to secure long-term housing. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
Teenager in critical condition after being struck by an SUV in Henderson
Authorities were called about 2:45 p.m. to the scene in the 2100 block of Olympic Avenue, near Green Valley Parkway and Sunset Road. The teenager was taken to University Medical Center in critical condition. (Michael Quine/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
The Water Question Part 3: Conservation loves a crisis
Future growth in the Las Vegas Valley will rest almost entirely on the community’s ability to conserve its finite share of the Colorado River.
The Water Question Part 7: How much can we grow?
Many experts agree that Southern Nevada can continue to grow, so long as residents are willing to do what needs to be done to stretch our crucial resource as far as it will go.
The Water Question Part 6: How many people can Southern Nevada’s water sustain?
The number can swing wildly depending on a host of variables, including the community’s rates of growth, conservation efforts and the severity of drought on the Colorado River.
Mylar Balloon Demo
NV Energy presented a demonstration Wednesday to depict the damage that can be caused by the release of Mylar balloons.
Educators dressed in red have taken to the streets to demand more for their students.
Educators dressed in red have taken to the streets to demand more for their students. Educators from around the State are bringing the Red for Ed movement to the steps of the Nevada Legislature in Carson City, NV, and to the Grant Sawyer Building in Las Vegas. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Nature Conservancy Ranch
The Nature Conservancy just bought the 900-acre 7J Ranch at the headwaters of the Amargosa River, north of Beatty. The property could become a research station, though ranching will continue.
Swift water rescue at Durango Wash in Las Vegas
On Thursday, February 14, 2019, at approximately 8:42 a.m., the Clark County Fire Department responded to a report of a swift water incident where people were trapped in the Durango wash which is located near 8771 Halcon Ave. Personnel found one person who was trapped in the flood channel. The individual was transported to the hospital in stable condition. Video by Clark County Fire & Rescue.
Flooding at E Cheyenne in N. Las Vegas Blvd.
Quick Weather Around the Strip
Rain hits Las Vegas, but that doesn't stop people from heading out to the Strip. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
Aaron Semas, professional bull rider, talks about his traumatic brain injuries
Aaron Semas, professional bull rider, talks about his traumatic brain injuries. The Cleveland Clinic will begin researching the brains of retired bull riders to understand the impact traumatic brain injuries have on cognition. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/ Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Matt Stutzman shoots arrows with his feet
Matt Stutzman who was born without arms shoots arrows with his feet and hits the bullseye with remarkable accuracy. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Secretary of Air Force Emphasizes the Importance of Nellis AFB
US Secretary of the Air Force Heather Wilson visited Nellis Air Force Base during Red Flag training and described how important the base is to the military.
Former Northwest Academy student speaks out
Tanner Reynolds, 13, with his mother Angela McDonald, speaks out on his experience as a former student of Northwest Academy in Amargosa Valley, which includes abuse by staff member Caleb Michael Hill. Hill, 29, was arrested Jan. 29 by the Nye County Sheriff’s Office on suspicion of child abuse.
Former Northwest Academy students speak out
Tristan Groom, 15, and his brother Jade Gaastra, 23, speak out on their experiences as former students of Northwest Academy in Amargosa Valley, which includes abuse by staff and excessive medication.
Disruption At Metro PD OIS Presser
A man claiming to be part of the press refused to leave a press conference at Metro police headquarters, Wednesday January 30, 2019. Officers were forced to physically remove the man. (Mat Luschek/Review-Journal)
Clients at Las Vegas’ Homeless Courtyard talk about their experience
Clients at Las Vegas’ Homeless Courtyard talk about their experience after the city began operating around the clock. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Las Vegas parts ways with operator of homeless courtyard
Jocelyn Bluitt-Fisher discusses the transition between operators of the homeless courtyard in Las Vegas, Thursday Jan. 24, 2019.(Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas police and Raiders partner with SafeNest
Las Vegas police and the Raiders partner with SafeNest on Project Safe 417 (the police code for domestic violence is 417). The program partners trained SafeNest volunteer advocates with Metropolitan Police Department officers dispatched to domestic violence calls, allowing advocates to provide immediate crisis advocacy to victims at the scene of those calls. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @KMCannonPhoto
North Las Vegas police chief discusses officer-involved shooting
North Las Vegas police chief Pamela Ojeda held a press conference Thursday, Jan. 24, regarding an officer-involved shooting that took place on Jan. 21. The incident resulted in the killing of suspect Horacio Ruiz-Rodriguez. (Mat Luschek/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Home Front Page Footer Listing