Calgary teacher charged with sexual interference, unlawful confinement

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WATCH: A northeast Calgary teacher has been accused of cornering a student and making unwanted physical advances. Christa Dao has more on the charges and why police believe there may be more alleged victims.

A teacher at Bob Edwards School has been charged with sexual interference with a minor and unlawful confinement after an incident in October, police said in a media release Friday.

Just after 11 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25, police said they arrived at the Bob Edwards School after reports that a teacher had inappropriately touched several students.

Witnesses reported that a teacher arrived at school in the morning apparently under the influence of alcohol, police said. The teacher reportedly tried to talk with several students using inappropriate comments and physical contact.

One student is alleged to have been in a classroom with the teacher alone and was prevented from leaving, while the teacher made unwanted advances and inappropriate comments, police said. The student reported the incident, police were called and the teacher left the school.

Calgary police have charged Mikhail Kolesnikov, 35, with sexual interference with a child under 16 and unlawful confinement.

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“We charged on one victim, but we believe there are others,” Child Abuse Unit Staff Sgt. John Guigon said. “We do consider this an open investigation — still under investigation — so it’s quite possible there will be other victims.”

Guigon said this is Kolesnikov’s first involvement with police, and expects any other alleged victims that come forward will be in relation to the incident in October.

“We are actually waiting for several to come forward. A lot of them we’ve already spoken to, but yes, we are waiting for several more. We actually expect that these charges are going to bring others forward.”

Guigon couldn’t comment on how long Kolesnikov had been working for the CBE, but said police knew of Kolesnikov’s previous employment in Edmonton as a teacher.

In an emailed statement, the Calgary Board of Education said it was aware of the charges laid against one of its teachers.

“The school fully cooperated with the Calgary Police Service during their investigation,” the CBE said. “In accordance with the collective agreement, this employee is currently suspended with pay.”

Guigon said the students were very knowledgeable in how to handle this type of incident, as shown on the school’s surveillance video.

“They were very switched-on kids. As soon as this started happening, you can see on the video in fact where one kid runs to grab a teacher, the teacher responds almost immediately and discovers a student with the alleged offender. And it really happens very, very quickly.

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“The kids are very smart, really brave, knew something was wrong and should be commended.”