TIPTON COUNTY, Ind. (WISH) — A Tipton High School teacher arrested last week for an inappropriate relationship with an underage student was told in 2015 to cease contact with that same student.
Tipton Community School Corporation Superintendent Kevin Emsweller said school leaders knew of rumors in 2015 that 37-year-old Beau Engle and the alleged-victim were “too friendly.” School leaders told Engle to stop talking to the student unless absolutely necessary for educational or safety reasons.
Emsweller said he didn’t call police because an internal investigation found no misconduct. He said the principal investigated and found that the student had been eating lunch with Engle in his classroom.
“In hindsight we maybe should have [called police] and we’ve talked about that. But at the time of the investigation, we didn’t think there was any wrongdoing,” Emsweller said. “We get these kinds of reports all the time of infatuations of students toward teachers and teachers working closely with students.”
Engle, a teacher at Tipton High School, was arrested on Thursday for 10 counts of child seduction.
School leaders told Engle to stop talking to the girl but police said he kept contact with her, on and off school grounds.
On April 11, a concerned parent contacted 24-Hour News 8 regarding the alleged relationship. We immediately contacted investigators with the information that came into our newsroom.
On the morning of April 13, the Tipton Police Department began an official investigation. Engle was arrested that afternoon.
The district did not report any of the misconduct to police until police reached out to school leaders. Tipton police officer Brad Robins said after police reached out to school leaders, the district helped police in the investigation.
“They were in the process of gathering information to come to law enforcement, come to us, at the same time that Channel 8 received their tip,” Robins said. “They ultimately helped us seal this case up.”
Engle allegedly had the relationship for up to two years.
Police said when they questioned Engle last week he admitted to inappropriate contact with a student starting in early 2016. Detectives won’t disclose all the details, but they said Engle engaged in either inappropriate touching or intercourse with a girl younger than 18. If convicted, he could spend years in prison.
The school said Engle was suspended with pay.
24-Hour News 8 reached out to the Department of Child Services regarding the case.
DCS said the school should have reported the rumors to police back in 2015. DCS said the school should not have been the investigative agency.
Indiana law requires anyone with “reason to believe” child abuse occurred, to report that information to police. Failure to do so is a class B misdemeanor crime.