LINCOLN—(KFOR July 20)—Lincoln Police late Thursday afternoon announced they arrested a suspect wanted in connection to three felony charges–two counts of sexual assault through an electronic device and one count of sex trafficking of a minor.
Assistant Police Chief Brian Jackson said 26-year-old Zachary Scheich apparently had posed as a student at Lincoln Northwest and Lincoln Southeast high schools during the 2022-23 school year. He went by the alias of Zak Hess, where he claimed to be 17-years-old and had enrolled at Northwest before transferring to Southeast for the second semester. Jackson says Scheich attended 54 days of school during this time and based on his height of 5-4 and weight of 120 pounds, he blended in with other students.
Scheich, who graduated from Lincoln Public Schools in 2015, was contacted by Lincoln Police early Thursday afternoon at a city library and taken into custody without incident.
“The focus has now shifted from trying to locate the suspect to trying to identify the scope of his actions,” Jackson added.
LPS director of security Joe Wright says a person contacted one of the school administrators about the incident. He mentioned to reporters the general requirement to enroll in school is proof of birth certificate, proof of transcript and immunization records.
“Some parents don’t vaccinate, some home school kids don’t have transcripts when they come in. We have kids from across the world who come in that don’t have birth records,” Wright said. “We have the statutory responsibility to educate all kids 20 and under.”
Wright added what’s provided to them is sometime not as thorough as they would like or proof positive.
“We’re reviewing what we can do as a district,” according to Wright. “But we have to state within the requirements of state law and federal law. ”
For now, Wright doesn’t see any change in the requirements but with this incident, it’s provided a starting place on where LPS can go forward. He says they are looking at other safeguards in preventing something like this from happening again.
None of these incidents happened on Lincoln Public Schools properties. LPD was first notified about the case on June 1.
Several juveniles, all females, have been interviewed and Lincoln Police are asking for any other potential victims to contact them at 402-441-6000 or Crime Stoppers at 402-475-3600.