A Roosevelt Middle School science teacher was arrested today, accused of abusing his two children.
Jeremy Shawn Parke, 39, of Moore, was arrested on a warrant about 12:30 p.m. at the school at 3233 SW 44, Moore Police Department spokesman Sgt. Jeremy Lewis said.
Parke was charged today in Cleveland County with two counts of child abuse or enabling child abuse.
Parke is accused of abusing his two children, both 19 months old but born to different mothers, Lewis said.
Parke's attorney, Elton Jenkins, of Norman, said Wednesday: “I can tell you this, similar accusations have been made about him in the past, and they were proven to be unfounded and untrue.
“My client willingly went and talked to law enforcement. He has nothing to hide. The main point is he was asked to make a statement and that's exactly what he did. The idea that he was going to do something or anything like that is just wrong. I've talked to this man and I've listened to what he has to say and he has steadfastly professed his innocence and wants his day in court.”
The abuse is said to have happened while the children were in Parke's care between March 4 and 7, Lewis said.
When the children were returned to their mothers, one mother noticed a burn on the chest of her child, Lewis said. Parke explained it as a rug burn that happened while the two were playing, Lewis said.
That child, a girl, also had a cut lip, a bruise above the eye and bruising on the buttocks. Parke explained the lip and eye injuries as a result of the child falling into a coffee table but could not explain the bruising on the buttocks, Lewis said.
The girl was taken to Logan County Hospital, and a report was made to the Guthrie Police Department. The state Department of Human Services was notified.
The mother of the second child, a boy, was contacted by DHS after the daughter's injuries were reported, said Michael Grant, attorney for the girl's mother. The boy had similar burns on his chest, Grant said.
Lewis said the boy was taken to The Children's Hospital at OU Medical Center. He said doctors at both hospitals deemed the injuries to the children nonaccidental.
Lewis said the mother of the boy contacted Moore Police Department, which sought the warrant for Parke's arrest. The warrant was served by the Cleveland County Task Force.
It is unknown if Parke has other children.
A spokeswoman for the Oklahoma City School District said Parke has been employed with the district since August 2006. He is a science teacher, but also has taught social studies. Previously he served the district as a physical education teacher at Cleveland Elementary School and as a substitute teacher.
“Oklahoma City Public Schools has become aware of the arrest of a Roosevelt employee,” district spokeswoman Tierney Tinnin wrote in a statement released to media. “We have fully cooperated with the law enforcement. We will take the appropriate administrative action and Mr. Parke will be immediately placed on administrative leave.”
Contributing: Staff writer Matt Patterson