President and CEO of Wichita YMCA answers questions surrounding rape investigation

Caleb Gaston (Mug shot courtesy Sedgwick County Jail)

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – It’s been almost one week since the breaking news of a worker at the downtown YMCA had been arrested and charged with the rape of a four-year-old girl. In that week, the Y has been tight-lipped, only issuing press releases, but that changed Wednesday afternoon.

KSN’s John Asebes sat down with Ronn McMahon, the President and CEO of the Greater Wichita YMCA, to talk about the allegations that a staff member raped a four-year-old girl at the downtown YMCA.

McMahon said the company does rigorous background checks to make sure each employee is vetted. Caleb Gaston’s background check came back clean. Gaston was previously fired from another day care after allegations were raised that he touched a preschooler inappropriately. Gaston, however, was never charged or convicted, so the allegations would not show up on a background check.

It was also confirmed Wednesday that Gaston’s mother is currently on staff at the YMCA. KSN wanted to know if anyone on the staff knew about Caleb Gaston’s past allegations.

When asked if anyone on staff knew Caleb Gaston had been previously fired from the day care and previously under investigation, McMahon said, “not that we’re aware of, no.”

“We are fully cooperating with the police on the investigation as well as conducting our own internal investigation as well,” added McMahon.

McMahon said they are still speaking with families who may have had children in the Kid Zone at the time of Gaston’s employment. He said at this time, they have yet to hear of any additional claims of misconduct.

The Greater Wichita Y says it will do sex offender checks on employees and members. The new policy is part of a nationwide effort as other YMCAs across the nation will also be performing sex offender checks.

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