Former Toronto teacher charged in child porn investigation The Toronto Sun reports: A Toronto man who worked for local Jewish elementary schools was arrested after he was allegedly spotted watching child porn on a public computer at an employment and social services centre. Employees at the Lawrence Square office, located in the Lawrence Ave. W. and Allen Rd. area, noticed a man viewing […]

Former Toronto teacher charged in child porn investigation

The Toronto Sun reports:

A Toronto man who worked for local Jewish elementary schools was arrested after he was allegedly spotted watching child porn on a public computer at an employment and social services centre.

Employees at the Lawrence Square office, located in the Lawrence Ave. W. and Allen Rd. area, noticed a man viewing pornographic images of children from a portable disk drive, Toronto Police said.

The workers called police, but the man took off.

The child exploitation unit executed a search warrant at a North York home Wednesday and arrested Stephen Joseph Schacter, 55, who faces one count of possession of child pornography. He has no prior criminal record, Det.-Const. Joel Manherz said.

He appeared at 1000 Finch Ave. W. court Wednesday.

The 55-year-old was an elementary school teacher for the Eitz Chaim schools between 1986 and 2004, police said. He was the office administrator at the United Synagogue Day School between 2005 and 2009, and worked as a private tutor from 2009 to 2011.

Police say they’re concerned he may have had “inappropriate contact” with students in the past.

“We have been reviewing his computer and we have some information from that that suggests that that’s happened, so we’re looking for people to come forward,” Manherz said. “That’s not just limited to those two school we mentioned. Those are the ones where most of his time was spent, but it looks like he’s worked for a number of different schools in Toronto.”

Elias Levy, the executive director of Eitz Chaim, couldn’t be reached Friday, but Claire Sumerlus, the head of Robbins Hebrew Academy — formerly United Synagogue Day School — said parents of the 360 students from junior kindergarten to Grade 8 and student alumni have been notified of the investigation.

“We’re still conducting an internal review just to determine the facts,” she said. “We want to ensure parents the screening process for potential employees is extremely stringent.”

She said Schacter worked at two now-defunct campuses — the Richmond Hill campus from 2005 to 2006 as a supply teacher, and the Bayview campus from 2006 to 2009, in the office and as a supply teacher when needed.

“He left the school in 2009 and we’re still conducting a review as to understand the circumstances around his departure,” she said. “It’s always disheartening to hear that anyone’s been charged with child pornography.”

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