READING — A former Daniel Boone Area School District employee who faces multiple felonies for alleged sex crimes is scheduled to appear in a Berks County courtroom in April.
Preston Penley, 31, of Reading, was charged with rape of a child, statutory sexual assault, indecent assault, and other related charges after a witness came to police in 2012.
During an eight-month investigation, officers learned Penley was a part of the victim’s life during 2011 and 2012, police said. He would spend time alone with the victim and one witness told police Penley locked himself in a bedroom with the victim, police said.
One witness told police Penley allegedly sexually assaulted and raped the male victim several times between January and July of 2012, including in the bathroom of the Monocacy Creek Elementary Center.
The alleged assaults and rape of the child took place in the school outside of regular operating hours, police said.
According to police, the victim confirmed that Penley took him to the school after hours and assaulted him.
A second witness told police she noticed the boy would pull away from hugs and she saw signs of abuse on the victim.
Penley was hired by the Daniel Boone Area School District as a custodian in June of 2012, according to court paperwork and confirmed by Daniel Boone Acting Superintendant Patricia Sanker.
On Sept. 19, 2012, the school district fired Penley and his termination was approved during the Sept. 24, 2012, school board meeting, according to meeting minutes.
Sanker, who became superintendent on Jan. 6, 2014, did not know if the charges against Penley were the catalyst for his termination.
She said the district did not have a comment about Penley’s trial.
Jonathan Kurland, chief deputy district attorney for Berks County, could not comment on the case because trial is still pending.
On June 27, 2013, Penley was arraigned by District Judge Dean R. Patton, who set Penley’s bail at $250,000, according to court paperwork. During the preliminary hearing process, 8 of the original 21 charges against Penley were dismissed. Penley is confined to the Berks County Prison in lieu of his bail.