Former Fremont coach arrested on child seduction charges

Moses J. Castillo mugshot (Photo Courtesy: Steuben County Sheriff's Department)

FREMONT, Ind. (WANE) – A former Fremont High School coach has been arrested on five felony counts of child seduction.

Moses J. Castillo was arrested Wednesday and is being held in the Steuben County Jail with $10,000 bond.

Castillo resigned as coach of the Eagles’ cross country and track teams in December citing personal reasons, according to an article by the Herald Republican.

Castillo was hired at Fremont in 1997 to lead the boys and girls cross country teams. In 2015, he also took over as coach of the boys and girls track teams. He is a two-time Indiana Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches 1A Coach of the Year.

Online court records don’t list an attorney for Castillo.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Castillo and one of his runners began a sexual relationship at a cross country camp in June 2015. In July, she lost her virginity to Castillo when she was 17-years-old. The relationship continued up and past her 18th birthday and even into the beginning of her time in college. Both said they would have sex during cross country practices, as well as outside of practices. Locations included Steuben County back roads, Castillo’s house and Pokagan State Park.

The runner said she has been to counseling and has come to see she was being controlled and manipulated by Castillo. Their relationship has ended. She found the whole thing confusing, particularly because Castillo was married, but also because of the nature of their coach-student relationship.

Steuben County Prosecuting Attorney Jeremy Musser explained that in Indiana, the age of consent is 16-years-old, except in the case of coach who has a professional relationship with a student athlete that uses the relationship to engage in intercourse with that student.

He added that this case shows how careful students and parents should be towards everyone.

“Well you can never be too cautious,” he said. “I mean there are a number of cases like this and you can’t always tell. This is a well-respected member of the community, maybe they do a lot of good things. You always have to stay vigilant.”

The charges against Castillo came much to the disbelief of Fremont Community Schools Superintendent Dr. William Stitt

“I’m just in shock,” he said. “He built a good program. There’s a lot of people that would say great things about him and a lot of runners that would say wonderful things about his coaching. There was some good stuff going on.”

Stitt said the same day he first became aware of the accusations in December, Castillo resigned from being coach.

Thursday morning, he issued the following statement to the media:

The safety of our students and staff is the primary concern of Fremont Community Schools. In mid-December 2017, Fremont Community Schools learned that a coach, who is not employed as a teacher or staff member, may have entered into a relationship with a former athlete that did not comply with the expected standard of professionalism and appropriateness. Fremont Community Schools immediately reported the allegations to the proper authorities. He submitted his resignation, which the school board approved at its next meeting. The former lay coach was also instructed not to be on school grounds or have any communication with Fremont Community Schools’ students or staff members. That coach was Moses Castillo.

I stand firm in my belief that the actions of one individual do not represent the great work of everyone else at Fremont Community Schools. We will not be defined by the actions of any one person. We hold educators and other district employees to the highest standards of conduct in the best interest of students. We stand committed to providing an environment focused on learning for our students.

Because Fremont Community Schools understands that there is an on-going investigation being conducted by authorities, no further comment will be offered so as not to interfere with that process.

Dr. William Stitt