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Part-time teacher at Chapel Hill preschool charged with sex crimes involving child

Posted July 26

— A part-time teacher at Our PlayHouse Preschool and Kindergarten in Chapel Hill, was charged Wednesday with sex crimes involving a child, according to the Orange County Sherriff's Office.

Philip Anthony Thomas was arrested at his home, 250 Amberwood Run, and charged with two counts of indecent liberties with a student. The alleged incidents occurred at the school’s summer camp during the weeks of June 12 and June 19.

The investigation is ongoing, and additional charges are possible, according to authorities. Thomas has been employed previously with other early childhood development agencies and programs.

His first court appearance is scheduled for Thursday at 2 p.m.

Philip Anthony Thomas

Danielle Sunde, the owner of Our Playhouse made a statement regarding the incident:

Several weeks ago, a parent brought to my attention a serious allegation of inappropriate contact with their child by a former substitute teacher. Upon being made aware of this allegation, I immediately contacted all applicable state and local authorities and took all necessary steps to assure the safety of the school’s children. It is this action which led to the investigation and charges currently being reported."

"I will continue to work with law enforcement authorities during this investigation, and as always, will make the safety and well-being of our school’s children my highest priority.”

Parent Ingrid McCausland said she recognizes Thomas as a teacher who worked in her child's classroom.

"We saw him during that week," she said. "He was working with her classroom. I feel like I need to have a conversation with (my daughter) and if there was anything innapropriate."

Anyone with information related to this matter should contact Investigator D. Hunter at 919-245-2915.

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