IndyStar interviews ICESA on the arrest of Ben Davis teacher, child seduction

Vic Ryckaert, vic.ryckaert@indystar.com April 4, 2017

A Ben Davis High School teacher and former golf coach met a student for sex in two Indianapolis hotels 22 times since July, according to records filed in Marion Superior Court.

Five of those sexual encounters between Robert Chin and his student took place before the girl’s 18th birthday, according to a preliminary probable cause affidavit.

The 40-year-old Avon man was held without bond Tuesday in the Marion County Jail on a felony charge of child seduction, jail records show.

Prosecutors formally charged Chin with seven counts of felony child seduction, according to court records.

Chin told police that he was the head coach of the Ben Davis boys golf team and an assistant coach for the girls team. He said he taught honors English, critical thinking and other classes at the high school.

Police found Chin Saturday in a room at the Clarion Hotel, 2930 Waterfront Parkway on the west side, where they say he arranged to have sex with the girl hours earlier, according to the court records.

Officers interviewed the 18-year-old at her home, where she told them she and Chin began “more than just a student-teacher relationship” shortly after fall break of her junior year.

She began having sex with Chin in July when they started meeting in hotel rooms in Indianapolis, the girl told police.

Registry records showed Chin had checked in to the Clarion Hotel 14 times between July and April. Three of those dates were when the girl was 17, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Detective David Miller wrote in the court documents.

Chin checked into the Baymont Inn and Suites Indianapolis West, 3850 Eagle View Drive, eight times between August and February, according to the records. The girl was 17 on two of those dates, according to the records.

The age of sexual consent in Indiana is 16, but the child seduction law makes it a felony for an adult in a position of trust, including a coach, teacher or pastor, to have sex with a child they supervise who is younger than 18.

Tracey Horth Krueger, chief executive officer of the Indiana Coalition to End Sexual Assault, said the law is aimed at protecting vulnerable young people from authority figures who abuse and violate their trust.

“A 17-year-old is a kid in my opinion,” Horth Krueger said. “This whole child seduction law is intended to protect kids from people who use their influence for sex.”

Teachers have an ethical duty to protect their students from harm, Horth Krueger said. Any teacher who has sex with a student is in gross violation of professional ethics rules and the law, she said.

The records show that police were not done with the investigation. They seized Chin’s computer and iPhone to look for explicit photos the girl told them she had shared with her teacher. IMPD’s Cyber Crimes Unit was looking for more evidence that could lead to child pornography charges, according to the records.

The girl also told police that she and Chin had sex in a hotel in Plainfield, which means more charges could be filed in Hendricks County.

Wayne Township Schools spokeswoman Mary Lang on Monday said Chin was no longer a coach at the school and that the district had begun the process of firing him.

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