The Missoula Police Department has arrested a teacher at Hellgate Elementary School on sexual abuse of children charges, however, Hellgate Elementary Superintendent Doug Reisig says no children at the school were involved or affected by the alleged behavior.

Public Information Officer Lydia Arnold has details.

“Hellgate Elementary School teacher Scott Hamilton has been taken into custody on charges of attempted sexual abuse of children and sexual abuse of children - possession of material,” said Arnold. “Missoula Police Department received information regarding the alleged offenses and immediately opened an investigation. The investigation is being led by Detective J. Harris, who is part of Montana Internet Crimes against Children task Force, or ICAC.”

Arnold continued with the official statement.

“A search warrant was conducted on September 30 2021, at the residence of Scott Hamilton,” she said. “Detective Harris filed charges with the Missoula County Attorney's office on September 30, 2021. The morning of October 1, 2021 the Missoula Police Department obtained an arrest warrant for Scott Hamilton. Scott Hamilton was taken into custody without incident.”

Arnold said the investigation into this incident continues.

“The Missoula Police Department continues to follow up on all allegations of internet crimes against children and appreciates reporting by the public that helps facilitate thorough investigations,” she said. “This investigation is ongoing and when details are available they will be provided to the public.”

KGVO reached out to Hellgate Elementary School Superintendent Doug Reisig who provided the following comment.

“Today we learned about some charges leveled against one of our teachers, Mr. Hamilton,” said Reisig. “I have drafted a message that will go out to parents after school today, alerting them as to as to the charges and letting them know that at no time were any of these charges or any of this activity that we are aware of at this point in time leveled against any of our kids or did any misconduct happen on school district property during the course of the school day.”

Reisig continued his statement.

“None of the charges relate to conduct involving any Hellgate Elementary students or any misconduct that Mr. Hamilton may or may not have done in relation to the charges that are pending against him,” he said. “So, as difficult as it is and it's just terribly terribly troubling, it is at least reassuring to give our parents at least the information that we have right now that our kids are not involved in this.”

Reisig said the notification will be in parents’ hands before the end of the day.

“This message will go out to parents today,” he said. “It's already in the telephone notification system, and we're just waiting till the end of the school day. We've notified all the staff members, administrators and board members, and we're just trying to keep people as apprised and as knowledgeable as we can.”

Hellgate Elementary School is a Missoula public school with nearly 1,500 students and 168 employees.

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