BARSTOW (CBSLA.com) — Police have arrested a 35-year-old high school principal for allegedly having sex with a 17-year-old female student.
Mark Lesley Hassell, who heads Barstow Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Academy, was taken into police custody Friday after a school administrator was tipped off Tuesday about the alleged relationship, the Barstow Police Department reported.READ MORE: LA County Announces Re-Homing Program To Help Keep Pets Out Of Shelters
He was booked at the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Barstow Jail on charges of unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, sodomy and oral copulation.
Detectives interviewed the alleged victim, who confirmed she and Hassell had been involved in a “consensual sexual relationship for some time.”READ MORE: Viral Trend On TikTok Encourages Students To Damage School Property, Steal
Investigators reportedly obtained additional evidence that the two were in a sexual relationship.
Barstow Unified School District has placed Hassell on non-disciplinary paid leave until police conclude their investigation. The district announced he’s been told to stay away from all district students, employees and campuses.MORE NEWS: New $500M Skyscraper Proposed For Sunset Blvd. In Hollywood
Anyone with information pertaining to the investigation was asked to contact Det. Keith Libby at (760) 255-5134 or the Barstow Police Department at (760) 256-2211. Anonymous tips can be made by calling the WeTip Hotline at (800) 78-CRIME or at www.wetip.com.