RIVERSIDE – A former school administrator accused of molesting two Riverside County girls — one of whom confronted the woman in a widely seen YouTube video — was charged today with multiple felony counts.
Andrea Michelle Cardosa, 40, of Perris was arrested at 5:45 p.m. by a sheriff’s department warrant service team that took her into custody at her residence without incident, authorities said.
Cardosa was expected to be booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside and held in lieu of $5 million bail. Her initial court appearance is slated for 1:30 p.m. Thursday at the Riverside Hall of Justice, according to the District Attorney’s Office.
Cardosa became the focus of national attention last month after a 28- year-old woman posted a videotaped phone confrontation with the defendant, accusing her of sexual abuse 16 years earlier, which Cardosa appeared to acknowledge.
Since that time, a second woman, now 18, has surfaced, making similar allegations.
The first alleged victim, Jamie Carrillo, claimed she was molested by Cardosa beginning when she was a 12-year-old student at Chemawa Middle School in Riverside. The second victim, identified only as Brianna, alleged that Cardosa sexually abused her when she was 15 and attending Rivera Middle School in Perris, according to published reports.
Cardosa held teaching, coaching and administrative positions at both schools between 1997 and 2013, according to representatives from the Riverside Unified and Val Verde Unified school districts.
Until recently, the defendant was working as an assistant principal at Alhambra High School in Los Angeles County. She resigned immediately after Carrillo’s video went viral and a copy was sent to officials at the Alhambra Unified School District.
Cardosa is charged with 11 counts of lewd acts on a child under 15 years old and five counts of aggravated sexual assault of a minor. She is also facing sentence-enhancing allegations of targeting multiple victims.
According to the D.A.’s office, each of the assault counts carry potential life sentences.
Riverside police investigators allege Cardosa had illicit contact with Carrillo between 1997 and 2001, including while she was in high school.
The second girl was allegedly molested in 2009 and 2010. She has filed civil claims against the school districts.
”They’re supposed to protect their students, not physically harm them and mentally harm them,” she said in a Jan. 23 statement released to the media. ”They’re supposed to do their job a certain way because if they would have done it years ago, this would have not happened to me now.”
During Carrillo’s recorded conversation with Cardosa, posted Jan. 17, the alleged victim upbraids the educator, telling her, ”Do you realize that you brainwashed me and you manipulated me and that what you did was wrong?”
”Yes, and I regret it,” Cardosa replies.
”You sicken me, and every day when I think about what you did, you sicken me,” Carrillo says. ”You should be so ashamed and so disgusted with yourself.”
”I am, I am,” comes the answer.