Concerns raised over band director's criminal past

Published: Aug. 7, 2012 at 8:58 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 14, 2012 at 10:36 PM CDT
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Source: WBRC video
Source: WBRC video

TALLADEGA, AL (WBRC) - Talladega College has hired a marching band director with a criminal past that involves a sexual abuse allegation from minor student.

The charges were brought against Miguel Bonds in 2006 when he was the marching band director at Delaware State University.

The quiet community of Talladega is shocked that Bonds is the band director at the college.

"I think they should have a clean background...any kind of sexual abuse, they shouldn't be hired," said a resident who didn't want to go on camera.

This all stemmed from an incident a 20-year-old male student reported in 2006. The student knew Bonds and told him he was interested in joining a fraternity. Police say Bonds took the student to Bonds' apartment to "teach him what he needs to know about pledging."

The next morning, the student went to police and told them he became drunk after Bonds served him alcohol, then showed him a pornographic movie and then sexually assaulted him.

Police charged Bonds with second degree rape, two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor and serving alcohol to a minor. Bonds was jailed on a $12,000 bond.

FOX6 obtained information from the Delaware Department of Justice that shows that Bonds pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of sexual harrassment and offensive touching. He served one year of probation and was told to have no contact with the victim.

Now, Talladega residents wonder why the college's president hired Bonds as band director.

"If I had kids attending college, I wouldn't want them to be around that environment and get an education and do better for themselves," a man named D.J. said.

Talladega College President Billy C. Hawkins didn't return FOX6 News' calls for comment and when FOX6 News went to the campus to try and find Bonds, we were told that he wasn't in.

The Talladega County District Attorney said that Bonds may not have to register as a sex offender because there is no equivalent sexual harassment law in Alabama.

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