HOUSTON – Countless complaints were made through the years against an HISD security guard now accused of groping female students at several campuses while conducting bogus drug searches.
Devin Jay Delarosa, 28, is charged with five counts of indecency with a child.
Delarosa worked at Burbank Elementary School and Burbank Middle School from November 15, 2010 through June 1, 2012.
A student said Delarosa began fondling her when she was a 5th grader at Burbank Elementary School. She was only 11 years old at the time. She told investigators the inappropriate touching continued when she was a 6th grader at Burbank Middle School.
She said Delarosa would order her to “get over here.” He would then take her to a private location saying he needed to search her body for drugs, the girl said.
The accuser said he would take her to his office when she attended the elementary school and to a closet at the middle school campus.
The victim said Delarosa would grope and fondle her breasts each time he “searched” her, and once tried to feel between her legs, but she would not let him.
The student said she once asked Delarosa why he was searching her instead of a having a woman do it. Delarosa replied that he could do “whatever he wanted,” according to the girl.
She was not the only student to speak out against Delarosa. Records show that numerous complaints were made against the security guard.
Delarosa was reprimanded multiple times when middle school parents accused him of inappropriate contact with young girls, giving girls rides on his golf cart and befriending students online.
Police also found several complaints from young female students at Austin High School saying he was touching them in an inappropriate manner. Delarosa, who worked there between the 2010-2011 school year, was warned by school officials not to fraternize with female students.
Delarosa denied all of the allegations. He was jailed and given a $30,000 bond.
After his court appearance Monday, defense attorney Baldemar Zuniga said Delarosa was only doing his job.
“Perhaps there was a lapse in judgment with regard to the performance of his duties, but we certainly believe that once the investigation is completed and once the evidence is reviewed, that there is not going to be any indication that he was indecent with any of these children,” said Zuniga.
Investigators are looking into why he was allowed to continue working on the school campuses when multiple reports were made about him.
“As we go along, obviously we will investigate and learn more and learn more about his past history and whether or not that should have been a signal to anyone,” prosecutor Lisa Collins said.
In regards to the allegations made at Austin High School, HISD said the alleged behavior was documented by the school principal, who is no longer employed by the district. There is no indication the former principal shared this information with HISD Police, HISD Professional Standards, or any other appropriate authorities. Records documenting concerns about Delarosa’s actions were maintained at Austin High School, but do not appear to have been submitted for inclusion in his HISD personnel file. Delarosa was not charged with a crime related to the allegations at Austin High School.
According to HISD, Delarosa resigned from HISD in December when district police confronted him about the allegations of inappropriate behavior.
Delarosa was hired as a security guard at time when campus principals were responsible for screening and managing them. The Houston ISD Police Department has since assumed responsibility for overseeing security guard management.