Posted by Red Rock Canyon School Community for current and Past Students on Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Former school employee charged with felonies after sexually abusing Native girl

A former employee of a treatment facility for juveniles is awaiting extradition to California after authorities confirmed he fathered a child with a Native girl.

The 15-year-old victim is from the Tule River Tribe, a member of the community told Indianz.Com. She gave birth in April, The Deseret News reported.

A DNA test confirmed that Atonio Viliami Kavea, 29, fathered the child, according to The Deseret News and The Salt Lake Tribune. He is facing two felonies after being arrested in St. George, Utah, on September 27.

Atonio Viliami Kavea is seen in a booking photo from the Washington County Sheriff's Office in Utah.

The girl was a student at the Red Rock Canyon School in St. George when the employee allegedly began victimizing her, according to local news reports. Authorities say he was sexually abusing her in when she was only 14 years old, according to the news reports. The alleged crimes took place in California, according to the reports.

Sequel Youth and Family Services, the company that operated Red Rock Canyon, shut down the facility last month in response to numerous problems there, including allegations of sexual and physical assaults of students. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, nine employees have been charged with child abuse in the past 2 1/2 years alone.

Kavea is currently being held by the Washington County Sheriff's Office in Utah, according to online records. He is awaiting extradition to Porterville, California, to face the felony charges.

The Tule River Tribe is headquartered in Porterville.

Read More on the Story
Employee at Utah youth psychiatric center accused of fathering 15-year-old’s baby (The Deseret News October 1, 2019)
Police say a staffer at this Utah school for troubled youth fathered a child with a former student (The Salt Lake Tribune October 1, 2019)

Join the Conversation