PUTNAM COUNTY, N.Y. -- An instructor at Brewster High School is facing rape and other criminal charges in connection with an alleged sexual relationship with a student, said Putnam County Sheriff Don Smith.
Christopher L. Vlangas, 41, of Sherman, Conn., was arrested and charged Monday with engaging in a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old female student in the towns of Southeast and Patterson, said Capt. William McNamara.
Vlangas faces multiple charges of statutory rape and a charge of criminal sexual act in the case, McNamara said.
At the time the crimes took place, Vlangas was a Naval Science Instructor in the Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps. (NJROTC) Program at Brewster High School. According to social media content posted on the internet, he is a retired U.S. Navy Chief Petty Officer, McNamara said.
Vlangas has been charged with four felonies in the case. He was charged in Southeast with one count of criminal sexual act and one count of rape in the third degree. In Patterson, he was charged with two counts of rape in the third degree. The rape charges are based on the facts that the defendant is over the age of 21 and the student involved is under 17 years of age. Under the law, a person under 17 years old is deemed incapable of giving lawful consent in such cases.
School officials received information concerning the relationship on Oct. 12 and notified the Sheriff’s Office and an investigation was started. The defendant did not return to the school campus after the investigation began, McNamara said.
Sheriff’s investigators obtained an arrest warrant for Vlangas and he was arrested Danbury, Conn., by officers of the Danbury Police Department. Currently, Vlangas is being held in Connecticut as a fugitive from justice, to await his expected extradition to New York, McNamara added.
Investigators obtained judicial search warrants and executed searches of Vlangas’ office at the school, his Connecticut home, and his vehicle. At this time, authorities are not disclosing whether any evidence was found in those searches.
Sheriff’s investigators Corinne Pitt and Paul Piazza led the criminal investigation, with the assistance of the Putnam County District Attorney’s Office, the Connecticut State Attorney’s Office and the Connecticut State Police. The Sheriff’s Office coordinated with the Danbury Police Department to secure the defendant’s apprehension in that city.
A telephone hotline has been established at the Sheriff’s Office and anyone with information relevant to the case is asked to call (845) 808-4377. Calls will be kept confidential.
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