A man who was a substitute teacher in Maryland was recently sentenced to prison for 16 year after being convicted on charges related to child pornography. The sex crimes he committed involved 18 teenage girls, with 14 of them being local public school pupils. The man is 44 years old.
Authorities said the man had been a substitute teacher for an extended period of time at a middle school back in 2013. He ended up pleading guilty to charges involving the use of a computer to describe or depict a child performing a sexual act. He also pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a minor.
The man apparently used yearbook photos as well as other pictures to digitally change pornographic images by placing the face of the victims on other people's bodies. The photos were otherwise of people engaged in sexual acts. His criminal charges came after officials found a link between his email address and an album containing the photos, which were placed on a well-known photo sharing website. The man apologized to the criminal court for his actions.
When a person is accused of committing sex crimes in Maryland, he or she may choose to pursue a plea agreement with prosecutors -- if available -- in an effort to get a lower charge and/or a lighter sentence. When the circumstances warrant, the individual might simply proceed straight to trial and vigorously defend against the criminal charges. In court, prosecutors must prove each element of the charges beyond a reasonable doubt before a criminal conviction is possible, a burden that is set high to protect the rights of the accused. This standard is in place in order to prevent innocent people from being convicted and sentenced.
Source: baltimoresun.com, "Former Howard teacher sentenced to 16 years on child porn charges", Luke Lavoie, Jan. 12, 2015