Clovis Unified drama teacher arrested for sex crimes with minor

FRESNO, Calif.

/*Andrew Cardillo*/ taught drama for the past five years at Clovis North. For now, a substitute teacher is taking his place. Some former students say they suspected him of inappropriate behavior over the past few years and his arrest confirmed their suspicions.

At Clovis North, word is just getting to many students about why Mr. Cardillo is not on campus this year, but it was not a shock to his longtime student Brittany Sherron. She was in his drama class all four years at Clovis North. Sherron graduated in June and is leaving for college at UC Davis in a few weeks.

Brittany Sherron said, "I think it's hard to believe anyone would do something like this so close to home especially because I was in his class but it's not something that we're not believing."

Sherron says the student who made the accusations has graduated and is now away at college. She says the alleged victim is a close friend. "She's a really smart girl and she's very sweet and there's no way that this is a lie."

/*Detective Dustin Bruzee*/ says over the past two months, he's interviewed more than a dozen people before issuing a warrant for the teacher's arrest. "I can tell you all the charges Mr. Cardillo are facing are for sex with a minor under the age of 18 and as far as a time frame, I'm not going to get specific about a time frame but we do not have any evidence or belief that these crimes occurred on school grounds or during school hours."

When Action News shot video of the campus off school grounds, Principal Norm Anderson discouraged parents from talking with us. But, at least one parent wondered why the school has not notified parents of the allegations or arrest.

"I think they should've called us and let us know," said Tonya Gomez. "Usually if something happens on campus they have automated telephone messages. I haven't heard anything, I haven't got a phone call or anything."

Clovis Unified issued a statement saying quote: "Mr. Cardillo is a current employee on administrative leave from Clovis Unified. He was hired in 2007 as the drama teacher at Clovis North High School, and was placed on leave June 22, 2011. A substitute teacher was assigned to his classes in time for the start of the current school year."

Cardillo's attorney is out of town but told Action News his client has yet to be charged with any crime and is fully cooperating with police in this investigation.

Cardillo was arrested last week and bailed out of jail. He has also resigned from other drama companies he was involved with in the community.

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