Documents reveal accusations against former Tri-State school own - WGEM.com: Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Documents reveal accusations against former Tri-State school owner

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Benjamin Trane (Mugshot provided by the Lee County Sheriff's Office) Benjamin Trane (Mugshot provided by the Lee County Sheriff's Office)
Patrol vehicle at the Midwest Academy entrance Feb. 12 2016 when authorities raided the school. (File Photo) Patrol vehicle at the Midwest Academy entrance Feb. 12 2016 when authorities raided the school. (File Photo)
Trane speaking to media in 2016. (File photo) Trane speaking to media in 2016. (File photo)
Midwest Academy Midwest Academy
LEE COUNTY, Ia. (WGEM) -

Criminal complaints filed in Lee County District Court reveal the accusations against the former owner of Midwest Academy arrested Thursday.

Authorities said Ben Trane, 39, currently of Idaho Falls, Idaho, turned himself in after learning of warrants of his arrest. He's facing charges of sex abuse 3rd degree, sex exploit therapist pattern and child endangerment.

Midwest Academy was described as a private, therapeutic boarding school. The main campus was located at 2416 340th St. in Keokuk, while the Midwest Treatment Center was located at 2818 Hwy. 218 in Montrose.

Multiple agencies, including the FBI, raided the school facilities back in 2016 in light of sexual abuse allegations and students were removed. The school was officially closed just days later.

Three criminal complaints were filed Aug. 31 by Iowa Department of Public Safety Special Agent Joe Lestino.

In one complaint, Lestino describes the sexual abuse allegation against Trane.

Lestino stated between January and December of 2015, Trane performed sexual acts on a student. He stated Trane "coerced the student to engage in sex acts for her to successfully participate and 'level up' in the program and to be able to contact her family members."

In the second complaint, Lestino stated the following:

During September 2014 through January 2016, defendant was owner and director of the Midwest Academy, a private for-profit therapeutic boarding school. Defendant held himself out to students as a counselor and therapist. Defendant proctored and participated in individual and group counseling sessions with female students, which included 'body therapy". The "body image therapy" involved the defendant having the female students undress and stand in front of a mirror to discuss what aspects of their body they did not like of felt uncomfortable with. Defendant further engaged in sexually explicit conversations with female students through conversation and written questionnaires and had physical contact with some of the female students. These acts were done for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification and attempted grooming.

The third complaint, which charges Trane with child endangerment, Lestino stated that the defendant maintained an enviroment that created a substantial risk to the students' physical, mental, or emotional health and/or safety. He stated this included solitary confinement for extended periods of time. 

Trane was expected to make his first court appearance Friday by video, according to the Lee County Clerk of Courts Office.

You can find previous WGEM News coverage of Trane and Midwest Academy below:

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