QUEENS, N.Y. (PIX11) — A New York City paraprofessional is accused of raping a 15-year-old girl he had an ongoing relationship with, according to police and law enforcement sources.
Jamall Russell, 29, turned himself in to police on Monday and was charged with rape, criminal sex act, sexual abuse, and acting in a manner injurious to a child less than 17 years old, police and sources said.
Russell is a teaching assistant at PS 97 in Queens but the girl is a student at another school, according to sources and public employment records. Their relationship went on for a few months, sources said.
A spokesperson for the Department of Education said Russell was suspended and could lose his job if he’s convicted.
“This alleged behavior is very troubling and completely unacceptable. There is nothing more important than the safety and well-being of our students,” the spokesperson said in a statement.
Mira Wassef is a digital reporter who has covered news and sports in the New York City area for more than a decade. She joined PIX11 News in 2022. See more of her work here.