DENVER (CBS4) – The Colorado High School Democrats are calling on Denver Public Schools board member Tay Anderson to resign. On Sunday, Anderson announced he would step back from his duties amid new allegations that he sexually assaulted and harassed more than 60 students.
“These false claims have put my family and I in harms way and now as a father and son I must protect those I love first, therefore I will be stepping back from everyday board functions until the completion of the independent investigation,” stated Anderson on Twitter.
Statement from Director Anderson: pic.twitter.com/8jW598INWu
— Tay Anderson (@TayAndersonCO) May 31, 2021
Members of the Colorado High School Democrats say DPS students and their families have lost confidence in Anderson.
“Our message from our organization is that no student should have to live in fear of one of their school board members,” said Spencer Wilcox, Chairman of Colorado High School Democrats, a position Tay Anderson previously held.
Last week Mary-Katherine Brooks Fleming, a DPS parent, testified that 61 high school students and one recent graduate came to her for help.
“One was as young as 14 and he needed stitches,” Fleming said. “Sixty-one were undocumented or DREAMers. All were so afraid of this one man that they could not whisper his name. All of them listed offenses from unwanted touching, which is a third degree felony in this state, to violent acts of rape that mirror my own.”
Rapist in Denver Public Schools, Testimony on SB21-088 https://t.co/eSI5pr1qsv
— Coach MK👟/Your Protest Mom ❤️🍪🥛 (@CoachMKFleming) May 26, 2021
Fleming created Wall of Moms Denver, a group that serves as a point of contact for members of the community. Fleming made the accusations while testifying in favor of Senate Bill 21-088, a bill that would remove the civil statute of limitations for child sex abuse and other types of misconduct in Colorado.
Investigators with the Denver Police Department have been in contact with Fleming, but as of Friday had not heard from any victims.
“If someone is a victim, we encourage them to contact Denver Police,” a spokesperson for the department told CBS4.
The DPS Board of Education opened an independent investigation in March after Black Lives Matter 5280 accused Tay Anderson of sexually assaulting a woman. In a statement on Friday, the board said the investigation led by Investigations Law Group remains open. Anyone with information about the accusations is asked to email email@example.com.
“Investigations Law Group are independent investigators and are working to protect the confidentiality and integrity of the information provided to them,” the DPS Board said.
Christopher R. Decker, the attorney representing Anderson released the following statement on Monday to CBS4:
“Director Anderson categorically denies the most recent allegations which have been made against him. He looks forward to defending himself from these false claims just as soon as they emerge from anonymity into the light of fair investigation. To date, not a single allegation against Director Anderson has provided any time, place, individual, or details to which he can even respond. When and if this occurs, he will respond with specifics and corroborating evidence.
“To date, no law enforcement agency or government agency has reached out to Director Anderson with any specifics of any of these claims. To the extent that Ms. Mary-Katherine Brooks Fleming has publicly stated that 62 victims have come to her claiming abuse ranging from unwanted touching to violent rapes, Director Anderson specifically denies any unlawful touching or assaults during his brief time as a teacher and since his election to the DPS Board. These acts never happened. Not a single child, parent, therapist, teacher, police officer, doctor, or individual has come forth to substantiated these incredible assertions.
“Director Anderson implores DPS counsel to respond immediately to Ms. Brooks Flemings allegations that DPS staff and legal counsel herself engaged in a criminal coverup to include the use of nondisclosure agreements to silence dozens of victims who are current DPS students. Director Anderson has no knowledge of, or participation in, such a vile claim of silencing child sexual assault victims.
“Finally, Director Anderson is saddened that so many have rushed to judgments about these inflammatory accusations. All he asks for is a fair, responsible, and thorough investigation. He knows this will exonerate him. He continues to cooperate with the private investigation initiated by DPS and will cooperate with any criminal investigation which may be underway.
“As his attorney, I am particularly concerned that while absolutely no details or facts have been released regarding any of these claims, it appears that many have already presumed his guilt, vilified him, and ignored his significant contributions to the DPS community. All this before any specifics, details, charges or findings. I ask you to remember that we are a nation of laws and principles. These must not be eclipsed by unproved and anonymous allegations regardless of their number or nature.
“The truth will be revealed and Director Anderson will be cleared of these poisonous and false claims.”