Sexual abuse of children charges filed against former youth mental health worker in Johnson Co., Kansas

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OLATHE, Kan. -- Johnson County prosecutors have charged a former youth mental health worker with sexually abusing five children.

Investigators faced challenges in this case because the alleged crimes all involve inappropriate touching of special needs children and they all happened more than three years ago.

KidsTLC provides treatment for minors with autism and other behavioral issues.

Dijon Willis, 27, is charged with five counts of indecent liberties with a child and one count of attempted sexual exploitation of a child.

He worked at TLC in 2014 when one report of alleged abuse sparked others among teens at the center.

"It’s empowering, we’ve seen it play out nationally that once one or two people report misconduct others feel empowered to do the same," said Steve Howe, Johnson County District Attorney. "I’ve seen that on a numver of occasions. Once it gets out there, other people feel more comfortable in going ahead and reporting what happened to them."

Willis left TLC in 2014 after an allegation was made against him. But investigators say he continued to work in jobs that put him in contact with children.

Willis has been released after posting a $50,000 bond.

KidsTLC says it will have a statement about the case later today.