Police officials said the 18-year-old suspect, Catrel, was arrested and taken into custody after he reportedly ‘indecently assaulted’ a 7-year-old girl. He was arrested on a felony charge of predatory criminal se-ual assault of a victim under age thirteen. The girl’s father, school principal, and the school’s chief executive officer traveled to the girl’s home to check on her. When she saw adults she could trust, she told them everything that Catrel allegedly did to her. And then she told police that this was not the first time the 18-year-old man had se-ually assaulted her. However, it was the first time he had done it while she was on a live camera feed during her distance learning classroom.
According to the police officials, the 7-year-old victim, who was not identified due to her age, was actually his seven-year-old relative. He committed the criminal act on video in an online forum that is often used for distance learning during the pandemic, and now he has been arrested and held without bail until his court date. Police said Catrel se-ually assaulted the child while she was in school via a distance learning application. Although the girl muted her microphone, the camera was left on, which allowed her teacher to see all the gruesome details of the assault.
Students in the class kept speaking up in defense of the girl. Some said, “What is going on?” and “What is happening?” The abuse was gra-hic and caught on camera during a pause in the class. That’s when the teacher saw Catrel se-ually assaulting the 7-year-old victim on camera. The teacher ordered the other students to log off the online classroom. She then called the victim’s name and told her to turn off the camera. That’s when the teacher saw the defendant close the computer. Immediately, the teacher reported the se-xual assault to the school’s principal. The principal called the girl’s family and involved the police and other authorities from the Department of Children and Family Services.
The child was rushed to the Children’s Hospital and is reported to be in stable condition. Meanwhile, police hunted down Catrel after they became aware of his attack. He was swiftly arrested. He confessed to se-ually assaulting his 7-year-old relative but were unable to provide a motive for the attack, “I don’t know why I’m sorry, I’m sorry.” Police officials also said that Catrel struggles with a learning disability called attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. His defense attorney reported that this disability impairs the young man’s ability to control his se-ual urges and impulses. Judge Beach said: “This ongoing history of assault, for approximately a year, according to the victim, leads me to believe this is not something that will just stop because I have ordered it to. This history and his actions from this case lead me to believe that he is a threat to an individual and the community as a whole.” Ladies and gentlemen, we are republishing this story amid recent reports that child se-ual abuse has surged in America during the pandemic. Statistics indicate 1 in 9 girls and 1 in 53 boys under the age of 18 experience se-ual abuse or assault from an adult.