A band director at a high school in Florida accused of having sex with a student, including romps in the band room, told investigators he “does not regret” the illicit encounters, police said.
An investigation into Ricardo Emanuel Esquilin, 28, started on Dec. 31 after a student at South Broward High School in Hollywood spoke with police investigators. Days later, as detectives listened in, the teen told Esquilin that her mother found incriminating text messages sent between the two, as well as a condom, the Miami Herald reports.
“Defendant Esquilin repeatedly apologized for not being strong enough and for being weak,” a probable cause affidavit obtained by the newspaper reads. “Victim One apologized for being honest and told him she doesn’t want him to be arrested.”
The student — identified by CBS Miami as a 17-year-old girl — told a Hollywood police detective that Esquilin started acting as a mentor and began “consoling her during her break-up” with a boyfriend.
“’Mr. E would take her off campus to go get ice cream and they would talk,” the affidavit continued. “’Mr. E’ encouraged her to not allow their relationship to influence her decision about her relationship with her boyfriend.”
But the teen told police that sexual encounters with Esquilin soon followed at a drive-in showing of “Fantastic Beasts 2” after her relationship with her boyfriend ended in November 2018, according to the affidavit.
“I really wanted to watch it,” Esquilin recalled to police. “But she was very flirtatious and she grabbed me and we didn’t stop.”
The pair later got intimate in several locations, including their homes and inside the band room at South Broward High School, the student told police. Esquilin, an alumnus of the school, even gave the teen Plan B birth control pills, she alleged.
“This happened more than once, being in the situation of me not having a condom and her wanting to do more,” Esquilin told police, according to the affidavit. “I was very weak in not being able to stop.”
Esquilin, who resigned for “personal reasons” in early January, said the teen initiated “a lot” of the sexual contact between the pair and cited the death of his father when asked to elaborate on the allegations.
“He knows it was wrong and there most likely will be consequences,” Detective Debra Levy wrote. “However, he does not regret being in a relationship with his student.”
Esquilin — who is facing a charge of sexual assault by a custodian/sexual battery on a victim between the ages of 12 and 18 — appeared before a judge in Broward County on Thursday, WPLG reports. He remained in custody without bail as of Friday, jail records show.
Some students, meanwhile, said they were shocked by the allegations given Esquilin’s reputation at the school.
“It’s disturbing, you know,” student Amy Garcia told CBS Miami. “I didn’t think he would do this to students. He was nice.”
Another student, Angelee Kimball, echoed that characterization.
“He was nice,” Kimball told the station. “He was a good teacher, actually, a good music teacher. I wasn’t really like that, I don’t like teachers in general but he was a good teacher.”
Investigators are also looking into allegations that Esquilin had sex with a 16-year-old girl four years before he started working at the school, CBS Miami reports.
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