On Oct. 15, 2020, a first-grade teacher told her students to mute themselves and turn off their cameras during a short break on their Google Meet session during the pandemic, the New York Post reported.
The girl muted herself, but she didn’t turn off the camera and the teacher saw Catrell Walls, 21, force the girl to perform oral sex.
Officials said the teacher quickly yelled for the other first-graders to log off and then she saw Walls grab the laptop and shut it.
The teacher alerted the school’s principal, who called the child’s family, Chicago police and the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services.
The girl’s father and school officials showed up at the home where the crime occurred and the child told them Walls, who is her relative, had forced her to perform oral sex on other occasions.
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Cook County Assistant State’s Attorney Andreana Turano said shortly after Walls’ arrest, “The victim disclosed, ‘He made me put my lips on [him] and this has happened before, and I don’t want my daddy to know, it’s a secret,” The Post reported.
The victim was treated at a local hospital and Walls, who was an 18-year-old high schooler at the time, was arrested the following day.
Walls admitted to the livestreamed attack as well as prior assaults, which dated back to when the girl was 6 years old, officials said.
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During his confession, Walls broke down in tears saying, “I don’t know why, I’m sorry, I’m sorry,” The Post reported.
At Walls’ initial bond hearing, his attorney said Walls had been diagnosed with ADHD, which impairs his ability to control his impulses, officials said.
Walls pleaded guilty to a felony sexual assault charge as part of a plea agreement with prosecutors, who dropped two other related felony charges as well as an unrelated prior weapons charge, according to The Post.
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