A former teacher and track coach at the Athenian School in Danville has been charged for allegedly sexually assaulting an unidentified girl nearly seven years ago, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office.
Raymond Earl Engeszer, 54, of Oakland pleaded not guilty on Sept. 14 to charges of sexual penetration by a foreign object and oral copulation of a person under 18 for crimes prosecutors allege occurred in December 2013 -- after he had already left the private school in eastern Danville, according to Athenian officials.
"What we can tell you is that Mr. Engeszer taught at our school from the fall of 2009 to 2012 as a science teacher and a track coach. He left our school in 2012. It is important that you know he was no longer employed at our school during the 2013 time period that reportedly is the subject of the current criminal charges," Head of School Eric Niles said in an email to residents.
"Of course, we are taking this very seriously. We are reaching out to the authorities for additional information and will fully cooperate with the ongoing criminal case," Niles added.
The survivor was a minor at the time, but no other identifying details about her -- including whether she was a student of Engeszer's or of the Athenian School -- will be released due to the nature of the case, according to DA's office spokesman Scott Alonso.
DA officials added that Engeszer previously taught at Convent and Stuart Hall in San Francisco as a science teacher, but he has had his teaching credentials suspended by the California Commission on Teaching Credentialing.
An Oakland resident, Engeszer is currently out of custody on $150,000 bail, according to prosecutors
Officials at Athenian, a private boarding and day school for students in sixth through 12th grades at the base of Mount Diablo in eastern Danville, say their institution has "very robust child protection policies" that are routinely reviewed in order to ensure the best practices are followed.
"These include criminal background checks as well as ongoing training for faculty and staff around boundaries and professional conduct, prevention of sexual harassment and mandatory reporting obligations related to suspected child abuse," Niles said. "In addition, students are regularly encouraged to seek out any trusted adult if they experience something that makes them feel uncomfortable or threatened."
The case is currently ongoing, and anybody with information about Engeszer can contact Danville Police Department Det. Daniel Lynch at 925-314-3711, according to the DA's office.
Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify that Engeszer was not employed at the Athenian School during the timeframe of the alleged assaults. The DA's Office initially reported he was employed at Athenian at the time, but on later follow-up deferred to the school, which said he had left in 2012.