Police Report Reveals Rape Suspect Admitted to Touching Child

BENTONVILLE, AR -- A probable cause affidavit from Bentonville Police offers more details in the investigation of a man suspected of raping a 5-year-old girl at school.

In a police report released Friday, investigators state the assault happened while the victim and Ali M. Matar Jr., 21, were alone in the library at R.E. Baker Elementary School. Matar worked at the after school program, Adventure Club, but district officials tell us their policy is that an employee is never supposed to be alone with a child.

"We've got an individual here that's definitely betrayed public trust to a great extent," said Bentonville Police Chief Jon Simpson.

Investigators say during an interview with the girl on Tuesday at the Children's Advocacy Center, she told them Matar's hands "tickled her" inside her private area, hugged her, and that it only happened one time.

"Well you can't help but put yourself in the mindset of a parent when something like this goes on and you think of your own kids and the reaction you just have as a dad," said Superintendent Michael Poore.

Detectives interviewed Matar Wednesday and say he initially told police he had touched her under her clothes accidentally, but then say he admitted to penetrating the victim with his finger, telling police he was "curious."

Matar was then arrested on a Class Y Felony Rape charge and could face up to 40 years in prison. Matar is still in the Benton County Jail. His bond has been set at $75,000 and his next court date is scheduled for June 23.

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