A Bellport High School teacher and assistant football coach has been accused of raping a girl younger than 17 years old—reportedly a student at the time who is now suing him.
Jonathan Elsalam, 27, pleaded not guilty Monday at Suffolk County court to charges of raping a girl younger than 17 while he was older than 21, criminal sexual act and endangering the welfare of a child, court records show.
“I’ve been waiting for somebody to tell me he’s been arrested for a long time,” the unidentified victim told the New York Post, which first reported the story.
The newspaper reported that the Ridge man’s arrest coincided with the victim’s filing of a federal lawsuit against the suspect and the South Country School District.
Elsalam was reportedly suspended and locked out of the building in October.
“This defendant violated a trust and stands accused of preying upon a teenage girl, one of his students,” District Attorney Thomas Spota said.
Bellport High School also made headlines in a grade-fixing scandal involving a star Clippers football player two years ago.
The case comes after an Eastport-South Manor High School substitute teacher was charged with having sex with a 16-year-old student last week, students allegedly caught a North Shore Middle School gym masturbating to pornographer in his office last month and a Wyandanch assistant principal was arrested for sexting students in March.
In addition, a Westhampton Beach teacher was accused of filming girls changing in the locker room and a Freeport Middle School principal was arrested of having sexual relations with a former student on the same day in March.
Judge Barbara Kahn set bail for Elsalam at $25,000 bond or $5,000 cash. He is due back in court May 29.