MARTINEZ — The case against a former high school teacher who moonlighted as a babysitter appears to be snowballing, as authorities say they’ve identified two new victims and more could be on the way.
Brandon Genest, 28, now has two new felony charges — making a total of seven — against four alleged victims. Three of them are boys and one is a girl, according to court records. The alleged offense dates go back as far as October 2017.
Prosecutors say police are interviewing more potential victims, and additional charges could be on the way. Investigators won’t say how many suspected victims there are, but say Genest has been using various apps and social media platforms to advertising babysitting services for years.
“We have a lot more work to do,” deputy district attorney Devon Bell said. “He marketed himself in a number of ways, so we are trying to make sure we know the universe of apps and services he was using to advertise.”
Bell added that Genest advertised himself as specializing in looking after children with special needs. So far, police agencies and Virginia and Rhode Island have been contacted as part of the investigation
Genest has also been charged with possessing child porn, which was allegedly found on an electronic device around the time he was arrested. There could be more charges to come related to that alleged conduct as well.
“We haven’t finished our investigation of his electronic devices, his phone, computer, et cetera, as well as continuously going through his social media to identify any other victims,” Bell said.
Genest was arrested in early June after two children, aged 6 and 7, told police Genest had showed them his penis and asked them to touch it while he was babysitting them.
At the time, Genest was working as a teacher at Bentley High School in Lafayette. Before coming to the Bay Area, he advertised himself as a babysitter in several states along the East Coast, authorities said.
Since his arrest, Genest has been fired from his high school teaching job, according to a statement issued by the school.
“Dr. Genest joined the Bentley faculty in August 2017. As is our policy, we conducted a background check and no issues were reported by the Department of Justice,” the statement from the Bentley school says. “When school opens again in the fall, we will hold age-appropriate assemblies to speak with our students and make sure they understand the importance of talking to a trusted adult any time someone’s behavior makes them feel uncomfortable.”
Before he was charged, Genest agreed to speak with police and claimed his penis had accidentally fallen out of his pants. He said that neither child touched his private parts, but then later said it may have happened accidentally. He also claimed to have never had a sexual experience, according to police records.
Genest’s arraignment hearing has been scheduled for 8:30 a.m. Thursday in Martinez.
Anyone with information about the case is asked to call Contra Costa District Attorney inspector Darryl Holcombe 925-957-2263.