A 32-year-old man who worked as a security guard at Ridgefield High School allegedly messaged a 16-year-old female student in an attempt to get her to send him photos.
Kevin M. Plue of Vancouver was sent a notice to appear in Battle Ground Municipal Court on Dec. 5 on two counts of stalking and a single count of communicating with a minor for immoral purposes. Both charges are gross misdemeanors.
According to a declaration of probable cause, prepared by a Ridgefield police officer, Plue flirted with and asked the teenager for her Snapchat handle Oct. 31. Later that night, and over the course of several days, he messaged the girl on the app.
Plue sent a photo of his face to the girl before stating he could not send “other kinds of photos,” because she wasn’t yet 18. He told the girl she needed to send photos first, so he would know what to send in return, court records say.
The girl told school staff, who met with Plue. The court document does not indicate what happened in that meeting, but Plue allegedly continued messaging the girl and asked if she was going to send photos.
Then, the girl showed the messages to a friend, and together, they tried to avoid Plue between classes after she blocked him on Snapchat, according to the declaration.
“Kevin would still end up at their next class. They told me that Kevin would glare at them, and they were in fear of him finding them alone on campus. He would come in their classes and wait for them in the parking lot,” the declaration reads.
In an interview with police, Plue said there must have been a misunderstanding about sending the photos.
“Kevin did not ever deny the conversations between he and (the girl). Kevin just tried to provide me with an explanation for what he said, or to minimize the content of the conversation,” the declaration says.
In an undated letter to parents, shared with The Columbian, the high school said it wanted to respond to growing rumors about staff changes made to its security employees.
Principal Christen Palmer wrote that staff received information about inappropriate communication by a security officer.
“Upon learning this information, the employee was immediately removed from the RHS campus so an investigation could be completed. The investigation is finalized, and the employee will not return” to work, the letter says.
Palmer commended the students who reported the situation to a trusted adult.
Chris Griffith, assistant superintendent for the district, on Tuesday backed up the letter sent to families, and said the district removed Plue from the campus as soon as officials learned of the allegations.