9 elementary students molested by former Osceola substitute, Sheriff's Office says

Syed Asher, 19, faces 3 new charges of molesting victims under 12

By Emilee Speck - Digital journalist

OSCEOLA COUNTY, Fla. - More charges have been filed against a former Osceola County substitute teacher accused of molesting young girls at several elementary schools, according to records with the Osceola Clerk of Courts.

Syed Asher, 19, is accused of inappropriately touching students at three of the nine schools where he worked as a substitute teacher for Osceola County Schools. He was previously charged with nine counts of lewd or lascivious molestation of victims under 12 and 18 years old.

Court records show three additional lewd or lascivious molestation charges were filed Wednesday against Asher. The offenses against victims under 12 years old occurred Feb. 8 and Feb. 28, records show.

A spokesperson for the Osceola County Sheriff's Office said there are a total of nine female victims between 6 and 8 years old. The incidents happened at Boggy Creek, Pleasant Hill and Ventura elementary schools.

Asher was first arrested March 4, then again April 9 and 10. Osceola County Jail records show he was booked into the jail Wednesday on the three additional charges.

Asher was scheduled to have a first appearance at 1 p.m.

Detective interview audio revealed, Asher admitted to detectives after his first arrest that he did touch some students and said he "made a mistake” and thought the victim’s were “beautiful and attractive.”

"Asher committed his crimes by molesting these children near the teacher’s desk area, while he simultaneously distracted the victims by going over classwork," according to the Sheriff's Office.

After the allegations came to light on March 1, Osceola County School officials personally contacted more than 200 parents and guardians of all students who had direct contact with the suspect.

Detectives have interviewed students in all classes where Asher was a substitute teacher. A spokesperson for the Sheriff's Office said they don’t believe there are any more victims but if anyone has any additional information they are encouraged to please contact the Sheriff's Office so that it can investigate.

Below is a list of exact classes, grades and dates Asher taught and the number of kids in each of those classes:

Boggy Creek Elementary:

  • 2/21/19: Dual language class, 1st grade – 14 students.
  • 2/28/19: Dual language class, 2nd grade – 18 students.

Central Avenue Elementary:

  • 1/16/19: Math and science, 4th grade – 18 students in the morning, 20 students in the afternoon.
  • 1/23/19: 1st grade – 20 students, prekindergarten lunch and planning – 19 students, KG – 18 students.
  • 2/6/19: 2nd grade – 19 students.
  • 2/20/19: Kindergarten – 17 students.

Flora Ridge Elementary:

  • 2/12/19: Kindergarten – 21 students.
  • 2/18/19: Math & Science, 5th grade – 22 students in the morning, 22 students in the afternoon, six intervention students.

Ventura Elementary:

  • 2/14/19: Music, Kindergarten through fifth grades – 107 students.

Pleasant Hill Elementary:

  • 1/22/19: 5th grade – 18 students in the morning, 22 students in the afternoon, 6 triple I students.
  • 2/8/19: 1st grade – 18 students.

Kissimmee Middle:

  • 12/18/18: STEM engineering, 6th, 7th, 8th grades – 137 students.
  • 12/20/18: Math, 7th grade – 101 students.
  • 1/11/19: Band/chorus, 6th, 7th, 8th grades – 134 students.
  • 2/1/19: Intensive reading, 8th grade – 107 students.

Kissimmee Elementary:

  • 1/18/19: Science and language arts, 5th grade – 63 students.

Parkway Middle:

  • 1/15/19: English language arts, 6th grade – 134 students.

Mill Creek Elementary:

  • 1/9/19: 1st grade – 21 students.

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