Tay Anderson, the 22-year-old director of the Denver Public Schools (DPS) Board and a prominent Black Lives Matter activist, has found himself in hot water over serious accusations of misconduct involving minors.
According to Fox News, Anderson, who received an award as a top rising star in the Democratic Party in 2020, has now stepped back from his position on the school board amid an investigation into claims that he sexually assaulted dozens of undocumented migrant schoolchildren.
The now-former director has fervently denied any wrongdoing, and his attorney has demanded that specific evidence be produced in support of the allegations, reports note.
The Denver Post first reported last week that another prominent social justice activist in the Denver community who aids sexual assault victims, Mary-Katherine Brooks Fleming, who is also the parent of three DPS students, had raised the allegations without directly naming Anderson during testimony before the state House Judiciary Committee regarding a bill to allow victims of child sexual abuse to sue their attackers’ employers.
Brooks Fleming reportedly alleged that there was “a sexual predator targeting DPS children,” explaining that 62 young individuals — 61 of whom were undocumented migrants — had come to her for assistance after being victimized by that predator, with the alleged assaults ranging from unwanted touching to “violent acts of rape.”
The Post noted that just a few days after that testimony, DPS acknowledged in an emailed statement that “[t]he Board was made aware of testimony at the Colorado Capitol this week and was later informed that the accusations were against Director Tay Anderson. The Denver police are also aware of these accusations,” the school system said.
The Denver Police Department later confirmed to the Post that it, too, was aware of the allegations, but noted that it had yet to hear from any of the alleged victims, who the department urged to come forward.
In light of the terrible accusations against him, Anderson issued a statement of denial Sunday. “These unsubstantiated false allegations have caused a great deal of trauma to our entire district, and our students deserve better,” he said.
“These false claims have put my family and I in harm’s 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,” the now-former school board official continued.
Anderson went on to express confidence that he would eventually be exonerated of the claims following an investigation, saying that he would return to the board once cleared. In the meantime, he said he refused to be a “distraction” from the board’s work and thus would not issue further comment.
But that’s not all the trouble for Anderson. Local NBC affiliate KUSA reported that these new allegations against the school administrator come just a few months after a woman who was in Anderson’s activism group came forward with claims that he sexually assaulted her, an accusation that several other women in the group later echoed.
DPS had already initiated a third-party, independent probe into those allegations in April, according to reports — and it looks like investigators have their work cut out for them.