SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — On March 3, Springdale Police arrested a convicted sex offender for knowingly entering public school campuses.
According to court documents, Dr. Mark Edward Oesterle, 49, of Fayetteville, went to a pair of Springdale public school campuses in February, which is a Class D Felony due to his Sex Offender status.
On February 9, Oesterle allegedly entered the Central Junior High School campus on 8th grade Parent’s Night. A detective obtained surveillance footage from the incident and saw the suspect arrive alone and begin speaking with three unidentified people, including a “petite blonde female” wearing a lanyard, indicating that she was either a student or a staff member.
The report stated that Oesterle gave her a hug and that her description “fit Oesterle’s victimology,” and that “his modus operandi included ‘groping’ [victims’] breasts while giving them hugs.” The suspect did not go to the front office to obtain permission to enter campus, and he did not request a school official escort.
The second incident occurred on February 12 at Har-Ber High School while an ACT test was being administered. The report stated that a teacher, unaware of Oesterle’s sex offender status, allowed him to escort a student to a testing room. Investigators obtained footage of this as well and saw him begin speaking to a teacher serving as a proctor during the test.
She stated that the suspect “initiated unwanted conversation” with her for about three minutes. The investigating detective estimated that approximately 20 students walked by Oesterle while he was on campus without a required escort.
A Felony Information document was submitted to Washington County Circuit Court and an arrest warrant for Oesterle was issued on March 2.
In 2021, Oesterle pleaded guilty to one charge after sexually assaulting two minor teen girls at the school where he worked. He was sentenced to six years probation, fined $1,000 and ordered to register as a Level 3 Sex Offender.
Oesterle worked for Fayetteville Public Schools and was previously an assistant principal at the Don Tyson School of Innovation in Springdale from 2015-16. Before that, he was an assistant principal at Har-Ber High School from 2014-15.
He was booked into the Washington County Jail and released on a $3,500 bond.
UPDATE: This story has been updated to include additional details obtained from an Affidavit for Warrant of Arrest.