Current Teacher Arrested for Sexual Assault of a Student More Than 20 Years Ago

Current Teacher Arrested for Sexual Assault of a Student More Than 20 Years Ago

A Fairfax County Public Schools teacher is in custody, arrested for sexually assaulting a student more than twenty years ago. According to police reports, detectives assigned to the Major Crimes Bureau Child Abuse Squad recently learned of the unlawful sexual contact and began an investigation. 

Detectives arrested Marc Damon Cheatham, 51, of Woodbridge on Jan. 20, 2021. He was charged with two counts of forcible sodomy (victim under 12), aggravated sexual assault (victim under 13), and producing obscene materials involving a minor. At the time of the assaults, Cheatham was a teacher at Barden Elementary School on Fort Belvoir. He taught at Barden Elementary School between 1993-1998. He is currently being held at the County’s Adult Detention Center without bond.

Cheatham has been a teacher with FCPS for 29 years. At the time of his arrest, he was employed at Holmes Middle School since 2017. While employed with FCPS, he also taught at Mount Eagle Elementary School (1992-1993), Fort Belvoir Elementary School (1998-2000), Groveton Elementary School (2000-2004), Lorton Station Elementary School (2004-2006), Terra Centre Elementary School (2006-2010), and Newington Forest Elementary School (2010-2017).

Detectives are seeking anyone who has information about this investigation or may have had inappropriate contact with Cheatham to call Major Crimes Bureau detectives at 703-246-7800, option 3. 

Victim specialists from our Major Crimes Bureau’s Victim Services Division have been assigned to ensure that the victim is receiving appropriate resources and assistance.

Holmes Middle School Principal Margaret Barnes sent the following letter to the school community there:

“Fairfax County Public Schools has been informed that police have filed criminal charges against a Holmes Middle School staff member. Marc D. Cheatham, a sixth-grade history and social studies teacher, is accused of crimes against a student who attended FCPS in the mid 1990s. At that time, Mr. Cheatham was teaching at Barden Elementary School.  ...

The employee is currently on unpaid administrative leave.

FCPS and the school are fully cooperating with police. As this remains an ongoing criminal investigation, any additional information will be released by law enforcement.

“This news is very upsetting to all of us. The primary responsibility for FCPS is always the safety and wellbeing of our students.  We will continue to be diligent in our efforts to provide a safe learning environment and we commit to swift action any time we are made aware of a potential violation of the trust between our students and staff.

“Counselors are available to provide any support necessary for students and their families.”