A man and woman who once owned and operated a private school in South Los Angeles were charged with sexually assaulting a 16-year-old student back in 2000, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said Monday.
The charges come after the pair — Joseph Horace Green, 52, and Chanell Nicola Warren, 43 — were on the run for 17 years before being arrested in October. Less than a month before they were found hiding out in Florida, they were featured on HLN’s “The Hunt with John Walsh,” featuring the same host as the long-running “America’s Most Wanted.”
When they were arrested, Green and Warren were actually looking into the purchase of another school and had been working with a home-school network, CNN reported.
Green has since been charged with sodomy, sexual penetration by a foreign object and four counts of unlawful sexual intercourse, prosecutors said. Warren has been charged with sexual penetration by a foreign object and six counts of oral copulation of a person under the age of 18.
Before facing those charges, the couple founded a private school that once won the praise of former Mayor Richard Riordan for “their outstanding work as educators and mentors to the students,” the Los Angeles Times reported.
Together, Green and Warren owned and ran a private school in the South L.A. neighborhood of Hyde Park called Enlightened Minds School, which taught an Afrocentric curriculum to students in grades kindergarten through 12th grade, the Times reported. They used the fake names Ty and Tisa Yiyara.
But the pair went missing once a criminal complaint was filed in March 2000 by the teenage girl they have now been charged with assaulting. She told police the couple had sexually molested her.
Shortly after the allegations surfaced, just two months later, LAPD officials would reveal Green and Warren had put together an entirely fabricated life — complete with fake educational credentials and a cover-up of past sex crimes.
Under his fake name, Green claimed to have a master’s degree in social work from Dallas Baptist University and to be a former Air Force captain. But police said that degree was bought through a mail-order catalog and the military record isn’t real.
What is real, police said, is Green’s history of sex offenses.
Just two years before co-founding the school, Green had already been arrested and charged with three counts of sexually molesting a minor and was a registered sex offender.
Investigators found out about the sexual abuse at Enlightened Minds when other students on a school camping trip noticed another student sleeping with two adults in another room, according to LAPD.
In early 2000, Green had approached a teen girl enrolled at the private school he was running, prosecutors said.
He and Warren allegedly took the girl to an RV parked in front of their home and assaulted her, prosecutors said, and they assaulted the girl multiple times over the next several weeks.
Green faces up to six years and four months in state prison while Warren faces up to eight years.