(GREENCASTLE) - A former Greencastle childcare worker faces multiple charges of sexual misconduct with a minor after he had sex with two girls at a group facility, police said.
Mark D. Nichols, 47, worked nights at the Miller-Jones Group Home, a court-ordered juvenile treatment center for girls ages 6 to 18 that is operated by ResCare Residential.
Police began investigating after a 14-year-old girl who lived at the facility disclosed during a counseling session that she and Nichols had sex, and that he had sex with at least one other girl at the facility, investigators said.
Police said Nichols was the only childcare worker on duty at times and that he allowed the girls to hang out with him in the living room.
According to the probable cause affidavit, one evening in March, Nichols was alone with one of the 14-year-old girls, asked her to get a blanket and then said they should have sex.
The girl told police she didn't want to say no because she didn't want Nichols to get her in trouble at the facility.
The second 14-year-old told a similar story, police said.
A ResCare spokesperson released a written statement that said all employees undergo extensive background check prior to being hired.
RTV6's Stacia Matthews spoke with Nichols' neighbors Doris and Russell Long, who said they don't know Nichols but they are shocked by the charges.
"That's unfortunate that crud-ball neighbor was messing with little girls," said Russell Long.
The Longs said their granddaughter was living at a ResCare facility during the time the alleged sexual misconduct occurred.
"I think he should be sent to prison," Doris Long said.
Nichols was arrested on five counts of sexual misconduct with a minor. He pleaded not guilty earlier this week.
Police said Nichols was fired from the facility before the allegations were made. He was training to become a corrections officer at a state facility, police said.
Nichols was being held at the Putnam County Jail.
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