A fugitive couple who ran a Los Angeles private school and evaded authorities who charged them with 13 sex crimes against minors in 2000 were apprehended in Florida recently, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Joseph Green, a 52-year-old registered sex offender, and his wife, Chanell Warren, 43, were arrested at 6 a.m. Wednesday at a home in Plantation, a city in the Miami metropolitan area, said Det. Robert Rettig of the Plantation Police Department. The joint arrests culminated a high-profile investigation by the FBI and Los Angeles Police Department, Rettig said. The pair, whose case was featured on CNN’s “The Hunt With John Walsh: School of Lies” last month, were administrators at Enlightened Minds School, a private Afrocentric institution in South Los Angeles.
Green is being held on $185,000 in the Broward County Jail, and Warren’s bail was set at $170,000, the report says.
Investigators discovered Green and Warren had moved to Florida and assumed false names before being caught 17 years after they were charged with sexually molesting a 16-year-old girl.
Green was a registered sex offender when he co-founded the school under the fake name Ty Yiyara with Warren in 1998. Authorities had charged him with three counts of sexually molesting a minor in 1996, and he pleaded no contest to one count of sexual battery. He was sentenced to two years behind bars in a state prison in Chino, the report says.
The man, evading police detection, ran the school of 50 students with fake credentials, but posted Craigslist ads soliciting sexual partners with Warren, prosecutors said. Molestation allegations came to light when students on a school camping trip saw another student sleeping in a room with two adults, according to LAPD.
The victim informed police that she was sexually involved with the couple. Police charged them with molesting a student in a white RV parked at their home in 2000.
The pair was believed to have fled Los Angeles for Florida in their motor home. The school shut down following the criminal allegations, CBS Los Angeles reported.
“There’s a lot of harm they caused,” said Nana Gyamfi, an attorney whose son attended the school as a preschooler about the couple who preyed on parents desperate for an alternative to the area’s struggling public schools. “At the same time, there’s a lot of restoring that needs to be done. None of that happens with people just getting arrested and going to prison.”