Gurnee police: Waukegan High teacher possessed child porn
Authorities seize computers from man’s apartment in Gurnee
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Gurnee police say a Waukegan High School teacher who lives in the village has been charged with possessing child pornography.
Francisco J. Garcia Almolda, 54, was held on a $50,000 cash bond Wednesday at the Lake County jail. Almolda was charged with three felony counts of child pornography possession, police said.
Almolda is the third instructor from Waukegan High's Brookside campus who has been arrested since October.
Police said a search warrant was executed Tuesday at the apartment Almolda shares with his girlfriend, also a Waukegan High teacher. Police Cmdr. Jay Patrick said a judge approved the search warrant after an investigation into child pornography began in January, with the belief such material was on a computer at Almolda's address.
Patrick said several digital files with child porn were found. He said officers seized numerous electronic devices and media from the home, including two computer towers, a laptop, several hard drives, flash drives and DVDs and CDs, all of which authorities are analyzing for unlawful content.
Authorities said there was no indication Almolda's girlfriend had involvement in or knowledge of the child porn. She was not arrested, Patrick said.
Almolda, an English Language Learner instructor, has been employed by Waukegan Unit District 60 since 2006, officials there said in a statement. He became a teacher in 2007.
Representatives from District 60's information technology department are conducting a search for illicit material on all school-owned computers on which Almolda had access, officials said. They said an initial examination of his district-issued computer tablet did not show improper activity.
"These alleged, illicit actions are reprehensible and will not be tolerated, whether they occur in our schools or away," District 60 Superintendent Donald Batiste said in a statement. "A parent should not have to worry about the staff in the school where they send their child. I promise that we will continue to do everything in our power to weed out these individuals and maintain the integrity of a safe and secure environment for our students."
Almolda has been suspended, but district officials declined to specify if it is with or without pay.
In late December, 30-year-old Waukegan High School physical education teacher Brandon M. Brown was charged with criminal sexual assault after an investigation found he had a sexual relationship with a former student, police said.
Police said District 60 officials alerted them of their discovery of a possible sexual relationship between Brown, a Waukegan resident, and a 17-year-old female student, who has since graduated. School district officials said they heard about the relationship while investigating another student's claim that Brown made her uncomfortable.
Waukegan High teacher Timothy Kinsey, who lives in the city, was charged in mid-October with having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl. Kinsey served for two years as a safety officer on the Brookside campus.
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