COCOA BEACH, Fla. - A 24-year-old employee of Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health in Viera was fired this week after being charged with having a sexual relationship with a student from the school.
Michael Cadore was pulled over Friday in Cocoa Beach and the officer involved found that he was traveling with a 15-year-old girl listed as a runaway in Orange County, investigators said.
When the two were questioned, investigators allegedly found sexual messages sent between them and a video of the pair having sexual contact.
Cocoa Beach Police Sgt. Manny Hernandez commended the officers' work in the case.
"It's good police work from our officers," he said.
Cadore's arrest became just one of more than a dozen sexual offenses reported at the school so far this year, according to law enforcement records.
The Brevard County Sheriff's Office said that deputies have responded to 29 battery complaints and 14 sexual offenses on the campus in 2017.
That is more than all of 2016, which had 12 batteries and 11 sexual offenses reported at the school.
Devereux has also been in hot water with the state Agency for Health Care Administration in 2017.
In March, investigators reported that Devereux in Viera failed to comply with "laws and regulations concerning background screening" for eight employees.
Of those eight, two were fired, according to a state report.
Another inspection in June found that the deficiencies had been corrected, officials said.
On its website, Devereux describes itself as a “professional, therapeutic environment for children and adolescents facing significant emotional, behavioral and intellectual/developmental challenges.”
Devereux Director of External Affairs, Lindsey Phillips, released the following statement Wednesday night:
"Through the good work of our local law enforcement officers, this situation that occurred within the community was brought to our attention. Any instance indicating a child’s safety has been compromised, is a situation we take very seriously. Furthermore, any indication of an adult making choices that ultimately harm youth is found to be abhorrent, unacceptable, and certainly not tolerated at Devereux.
Michael Cadore was an employee at Devereux Advanced Behavioral Health Florida as a direct care professional at our Viera Campus. When we became aware of his arrest, we immediately placed this employee on administrative leave, per our policy. Mr. Cadore has since been terminated from his employment at Devereux.
The process for background screening every applicant prior to employment at Devereux is comprehensive. Every applicant is required to pass a thorough screening, including a level II background screening as defined by Florida Statute and the Florida Department of Children and Families and consisting of; Fingerprints taken Live Scan and electronically cleared through the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Florida Department of Children and Families (DCF), Agency for Persons with Disabilities (APD), and Agency for Healthcare Administration (AHCA), local law checks in all counties of residence, completed and notarized affidavit of good moral character, driving history, social security name review, Fraud and Abuse Control Information Systems (FACIS) and child abuse registry clearance.
We work very closely with our partners in law enforcement and the agencies that provide regulatory oversight of our programs. Our partners in the child welfare and behavioral health community know Devereux to have a long history of caring for individuals with some of the most significant challenges. We acknowledge the hard work of our staff and partner agencies who are doing their very best each day to provide safe, compassionate services and crucial support for children and youth."
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