On April 20, another Prince George’s County teacher was arrested on child pornography charges. A Maryland State Police release stated, “34-year-old Christopher H. Speights, will be charged with six counts of possession of child pornography and three counts of distributing child pornography.”
On the same day in a letter addressed to parents, Prince George’s County School officials stated that Speights will no longer work for the school district. “We want to assure you that our school system has made significant changes to increase student safety,” the letter stated. The school system did not respond to AFRO inquiries about what measures would be put into place to prevent the hiring of individuals that could be harmful to students.
According to the police, Christopher H. Speights taught at Bradbury Heights Elementary School in Capitol Heights, Md. as a substitute teacher and a basketball coach for nine years. The Washington Post reported that Maryland State Police seized more than 150 graphic images and video of children performing sexually explicit acts on devices Speights owned. Speights preliminary hearing is set for May 15.
Gina Ford, a spokeswoman for the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office, said the photos did not appear to include students from Bradbury Heights.
According to the charging documents, the electronic-storage system – Dropbox – tipped off the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children that someone might have been using the service to store or distribute child pornography involving children as young as five years old. The center informed the state police, who obtained a warrant and searched Speights’ residence about 5:30 a.m. on April 20.
The state police said Speights allegedly admitted to the Dropbox account being his and that he had uploaded child pornography to it.
“I’m sure other parents are going berserk, because they trusted him,” a student’s parent, who did not want to be identified, told the AFRO. “This is crazy, I’m in shock. You can’t even put your kids in programs anymore, because you can’t just trust the people that you’re leaving your kids with.”
The arrest occurred about three months after a Prince George’s County Public Schools system teacher’s aide Deonte Carraway plead guilty to 15 federal child pornography counts. He faces a sentence of 60 to 100 years. Carraway’s is set to be sentenced in June.