One mother is reacting to the arrest of a former teacher at Bell Elementary School

Published: May. 20, 2022 at 10:13 PM EDT
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BELL, Fla. (WCJB) - “If it was my child, there would be no rock this person could hide under,” Vicki Gourley immediately thought of her son who attends Bell High school when she found out the news, and it brought tears to her eyes.

“That child is suffering because this idiot done to that child. Which is so not fair. This child is going to have to live with this for the rest of their life” said Gourley.

William Carawan was arrested at his home on one count of sexual battery on a victim older than twelve and younger than eighteen, as well as five charges of molestation.

Robert Willis, with the Gilchrist County Sheriffs Office, said deputies will do everything in their power to hold people accountable for their actions.

“It’s unfortunate that we have to look into these things and it’s even more unfortunate that we find out there’s actual victims. It’s rewarding to know they’re in custody and not amongst us anymore” said Willis.

The arrest comes after deputies were made aware of possible criminal conduct by Carawan on April 22nd.

“I have a daughter that in elementary school myself so I would tell them the same thing I’d tell her. Communicate with your parents, communicate with your teachers. If something doesn’t feel right it usually isn’t. Tell someone about it, come forward” said Willis.

Carawan is in the Columbia County Jail.

This news makes Vicki Gourley hopeful but she still doesn’t feel peace.

“That’s wonderful, but how long has this been going on since he got caught. Or she got caught. See that’s the question that nobody can answer right now” said Gorley.

Deputies said this is an active and ongoing investigation and Carawan is being held on a nine hundred thousand dollar bond.

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