A former Iowa City elementary school guidance counselor is facing allegations that he sexually abused a student. Fourty-one-year-old Donald Lyle Clark is accused of abusing a fifth-grade boy, who was 11-years-old at the time of the alleged abuse in 2003.
Clark surrendered himself to police early this morning. Iowa City Police spokesperson Sergeant Troy Kelsay says the victim told investigators the abuse happened in Clark’s office at Lemme Elementary School.
“On at least two occasions, there was contact between Mr. Clark and the victim’s genitals,” Kelsay said. The second instance allegedly involved Clark putting his hand inside the victim’s pants. “During that particular event, the 11-year-old became upset and Mr. Clark used a stuffed animal to kind of put it up in (the child’s) face to quiet him down and muffle the noise he was making,” Kelsay said.
The investigation started in June when officers were informed of the alleged abuse by the Department of Human Services after a call to a D.H.S. hotline from the victim. In addition to his work at Lemme, Clark provided counseling services at Grant Wood Elementary in Iowa City. He started working in the district in 2001 and resigned in April of 2008.
Kelsay believes Clark may have abused other school children during that time. “If there are additional victims out there, we would encourage those victims to come forward,” Kelsay said. “I would not personally be surprised if there were additional victims, however, I also think it’s important to stress that at this time, we are unaware of additional victims.”
Clark resigned shortly after being arrested by University Heights Police in March 2008. Clark was charged with indecent exposure after police say he performed a sex act with another inmate at the Johnson County Jail, shortly after he was arrested for drunken driving.
Today, the Iowa City School District sent out a letter to the families of any students that attended Lemme or Grant Wood when Clark was working there. A parent meeting is scheduled for this Thursday from 7 to 9 p.m. at City High School in Iowa City.