Posted at: 06/25/2013 4:26 PM
Updated at: 06/25/2013 6:12 PM
By: Amanda Ciavarri
A Rochester man fired from his job at Seabreeze Amusement Park and arrested. Police say he was inappropriately touching himself in front of a child at the park.
The Monroe County District Attorney's Office says that 20-year-old Jose Oliver was arrested and charged with public lewdness and endangering the welfare of a child. Police say, earlier this month, Oliver was in a park bathroom when a 10-year-old boy walked in and saw Oliver touching himself. The boy then left the bathroom and told an adult.
As summer vacation begins, more and more children will be visiting local parks like Seabreeze. News10NBC asked Seabreeze about their hiring policies, but they wouldn't share that with us.
News10NBC sat down with Mary Whittier from the Bivona Child Advocacy Center to talk about what can be done to protect kids at the parks. She said it's up to the parents to start educating their kids early on about what's inappropriate behavior.
Whitter said, “I think it starts very early. I think for adults and particularly parents for them at a very, very young age and talk to them about their body parts, what the appropriate names for their body parts are and that no one is allowed to touch them on their private parts.”
And it's up to the park officials to help keep kids safe.
Whitter said, “There is no such thing as a perfect background check, you can't catch everything, but that is first and foremost. Having policies in place that have those background checks and not having one child and an adult situations like someone from an amusement park doesn't take a child alone into the bathroom, or behind a ride or something like that.”
Seabreeze did give News10NBC a statement about the incident. They said, “At Seabreeze, our number one priority is the safety and comfort of our guests. When we were made aware of this situation, we immediately responded and conducted a thorough internal investigation. The new employee was subsequently terminated. Seabreeze is a family park. We will not tolerate behavior that is inappropriate or unlawful. "
News10NBC did go to Jose Oliver's home Tuesday to hear his side of the story, but a family member said he did not want to comment.
For tips on how to start the conversation with your children about these types of situations, click here.