Crime & Courts

Prospective Wichita teacher arrested on child solicitation charge

Sedgwick County Jail
Sedgwick County Jail File photo

An associate producer for KWCH who was slated to teach journalism at Wichita West High School was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of electronic solicitation of a child, according to jail records.

Troy Brian Rigg Jr., 23, was booked into the Sedgwick County Jail on a charge of electronic solicitation, a felony sex crime under Kansas law.

A Wichita school district official said Rigg had accepted an offer to teach journalism at West High School beginning this fall. Teacher contracts for the 2017-18 school year begin Aug. 1.

“What I can tell you is that we were made aware of this yesterday, and immediately began our own investigation,” said Wendy Johnson, spokeswoman for the district.

Brad Moses, general manager of KWCH, confirmed that Rigg was an employee of the station and referred The Eagle to information the station published online about the incident.

According to the KWCH report, the station “received an anonymous email Sunday night detailing possible inappropriate conduct involving Rigg.”

The e-mail contained a text message exchange and pictures, the station reported.

“Eyewitness News called police Monday morning, asked them to investigate and placed Rigg on leave pending the outcome of the investigation,” the report said.

According to Wichita police records, a reporting party said they received an e-mail of Rigg engaged in “explicit conduct” with a victim.

Rigg, who was listed with an Andover address, was booked into the jail just after 3 p.m. on Tuesday, records show. He was arrested in the 1200 block of South Topeka.

Kansas law defines electronic solicitation as “enticing or soliciting a person, whom the offender believes to be a child, to commit or submit to an unlawful sexual act” through electronic means.

Rigg was editor of The Sunflower, Wichita State University’s student newspaper, during the 2014-15 school year. He worked for the paper for five years, until his graduation from WSU in May, said Amy DeVault, the student newspaper adviser.

“TJ was a valued member of the staff. He was a good reporter. He was an excellent editor,” DeVault said.

“Nobody at The Sunflower, to my knowledge, has any knowledge of anything” regarding the arrest, she said.

Rigg posted on his personal Facebook page last month that he had accepted an offer to become the next journalism teacher at West High. On his Twitter page, he also referred to being a “future journalism teacher” at the school.

Suzanne Perez Tobias: 316-268-6567, @suzannetobias

Bryan Horwath: 316-269-6708, @bryan_horwath