BREAKING: Salinas High Counselor Re-Arrested on Further Molestation Charges
March 20, 2012
A week after he was arrested on suspicion of sexual contact with a 14-year-old student, a Salinas High School drug and alcohol counselor was re-arrested on March 19 after an investigation uncovered 14 videos he secretly shot of students engaging in sexual activity.
Using a hidden camera in his office, Gilbert Olivares allegedly filmed the teenagers without their knowledge after leaving them alone in his office.
“We don’t know if the situation was pre-arranged or not,” says Salinas Police investigations Sergeant Christopher Lane. “There is no doubt as to who set up the camera, but where he went from there, we don’t know.”
Detectives also seized dozens of videos and photographs of child pornography apparently downloaded from the Internet on Gilbert Olivares’ home computer.
Olivares turned himself into authorities Monday night accompanied by his attorney, Andrew Liu. The court upped Olivares’ bail to $1 million; he’s currently being held in the Monterey County Jail on charges of sexual contact with a minor, manufacturing child pornography and possession of child pornography.
“Mr. Olivares has fully cooperated with the police, and did in fact turn himself in to the police last night when requested to do so," Liu said. "I have not been made privy to any of the potential evidence, nor have I been notified of any charges that may or may not be filed against him. We should not rush to judgement, but we should be mindful that he is innocent unless and until he is proven guilty after a full and fair hearing in court."
Olivares, 34, was employed by Sunrise House, a joint powers authority including the city of Salinas and the County Office of Education, to provide drug counseling services.
Sunrise House staff declined to comment, but an email from the Board of Directors said Olivares has been removed from his post indefinitely, pending completion of the investigation.
“Over the 40+ years that Sunrise House has been in existence, nothing like this has ever occurred,” the board wrote. “We are saddened and shocked to learn about the unfortunate incident.”
“Counselors are placed in a position of trust and it appears that the counselor has violated that trust,” said Salinas High Principal Sasha Heckmann in a statement. “We are reviewing our internal protocols. In addition, we are conducting thorough facility walks to ensure that student contact occurs in public areas.”