Two Rialto high school officials accused of failing to report sexual assaults for months

A map shows the location of Carter High School in Rialto

Two assistant principals at a high school in Rialto were charged Wednesday after prosecutors alleged they failed to report on-campus sexual assaults by a student.

David Shenhan Yang, 38, and Natasha Harris, 37, of Carter High School each face one felony count of child abuse under circumstances or conditions likely to cause great bodily injury or death, and two misdemeanor counts of failure of a mandated reporter to report child abuse or neglect, according to the San Bernardino County district attorney’s office.

“As mandated reporters, both Harris and Yang are required by California state law to immediately alert law enforcement of child abuse or neglect,” prosecutors said.


Rialto police said they were first notified around 6:30 p.m. Feb. 16 of a sexual battery at the high school, and an initial report indicated that a 17-year-old male student had sexually assaulted a 15-year-old female student several times over the course of three months. Police found that the victim told Yang and Harris about the assaults in November.

“When detectives investigated the allegations they learned there were two additional female students, ages 15 and 16, who were sexually assaulted by the same suspect,” the Rialto Police Department said in a statement. “Although one of the victims first reported the assaults to school officials in September 2021, no notification was made to the Rialto Police Department until Feb. 16.”

The second victim told Yang and Harris in September that the same male student had been assaulting her, and the third victim, who hadn’t previously reported sexual assault to school officials, came forward this month, prosecutors said.

An investigative report details allegations of sexual misconduct at the elite Cate School related to 17 former faculty members that dates as far back as the 1960s.

Police said they launched an ongoing criminal investigation into the alleged assaults and the failure to report by Yang and Harris as soon as they were notified.

Detectives issued a citation to the 17-year-old suspect and released him into his parents’ custody pending criminal charges, police said.

School officials’ response to the reported assaults and allegations that the assistant principals failed to report the incidents to law enforcement sparked controversy among parents and students, who protested in front of the school Tuesday.

In a video posted to TikTok, a woman who said she is the mother of one of the victims confronts a Carter High School official, accusing the administrator of telling her that she had nothing to worry about.

The mother said school officials pressured her daughter to keep quiet about her allegations of assault.

An attorney representing one of the victims was not immediately available for comment.

Dist. Atty. Jason Anderson said in a statement that the assistant principals’ failure to report the assaults to authorities erodes the trust that students and parents place in school officials.

Their neglect led to further victimization of two students and the sexual assault of a third victim, Anderson alleged.

Syeda Jafri, a Rialto Unified School District spokeswoman, said that the safety and well-being of students is the district’s top priority and that officials are treating the allegations against the assistant principals “with extreme seriousness.”

An internal investigation by the district is ongoing, and officials are cooperating with authorities, Jafri said.

District officials were unable to comment Wednesday on Yang’s and Harris’ employment statuses.

According to Rialto police, Yang and Harris were arrested around 12:55 p.m. Wednesday at Carter High School and booked into the West Valley Detention Center with bail set at $150,000.

Anyone with information related to the investigations into the assaults or the assistant principals’ failures to report is asked to call Lt. James Mills at (909) 820-2632.

Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling WeTip at (800) 782-7463.