Teacher, Underwood Elementary School - Newton, MA
Table of Contents:
- Newton 2nd Grade Teacher Arrested For Child Pornography (01/17/2012)
- Newton Teacher Facing Child Porn Charges Resigns (02/02/2012)
- Mother: Babysitter Accused Of Sex Abuse Seemed Perfect (02/08/2012)
- Former Newton Teacher Charged With Sexually Assaulting Girl (02/08/2012)
- DA: Newton Teacher Charged With Child Porn Took Secret Photos Of Students (02/27/2012)
- Ex-Newton Teacher Facing New Sexual Assault Charges (02/28/2012)
- Prosecutors: Ex-Newton Teacher Fondled, Recorded Sleeping Kids (03/01/2012)
- Former Newton teacher Ettlinger gets 45 years for child porn (01/08/2013)
- Former Newton Teacher Sentenced 45 Years For Child Porn (01/08/2013)
- Massachusetts teacher sentenced in fed child porn case (01/08/2013)
- Ex-teacher gets 45-year sentence in child porn case (01/09/2013)
- Newton teacher in porn ring sentenced to 45 years (01/09/2013)
- Newton Superintendent Fleishman: new law will make schools safer (01/14/2013)
Newton 2nd Grade Teacher Arrested For Child Pornography
CBS NEWS (Boston) - January 17, 2012
NEWTON (CBS) – A second grade teacher in Newton was arrested Tuesday on child pornography charges.
Thirty-four-year-old David Ettlinger was arrested at his home in Brighton.
Police say they found hundreds of illegal images on his computer drives. They also say they discovered multiple pairs of young girls’ underwear, which Ettlinger allegedly took from bathrooms, pools, and changing rooms.
Police tracked him down being following internet activity. He logged into the online forum for child pornography called “Dreamboard” more than 20 times in 2010.
He is also expected to face charges of posing a child in the state of nudity after police seized an illegal video that he allegedly acknowledged making.
Ettlinger admitted he was the man in the video. He also told police that while the victim is not one of students, she is someone who trusted him.
“He identified the girl as somebody that he babysat for, the daughter of a family friend,” said David Deakin, the Assistant District Attorney in court.
Ettlinger was arraigned Tuesday afternoon and held on $10,000 bail. Prosecutors had asked for bail to be set at $250,000.
Ettlinger is a teacher at the Underwood Elementary School and he has taught in the Newton school system for 12 years.
He has been put on paid administrative leave. A letter was sent home to parents informing them of the charges and explaining the school has convened a crisis team to deal with the situation.
The Superintendent of Newton Public Schools David Fleishman told reporters hours after Ettlinger’s arrest that the popular teacher just passed a routine background check in 2010. Now he says his focus is on comforting the teachers and students of the school, “It’s so sad and upsetting on so many levels and our concern is the Underwood community and supporting them.”
Newton Mayor Setti Warren issued a statement addressing the allegations.
“Our first priority is ensuring the safety of every child. If these allegations prove to be true, the suspect detained should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The type of behavior that is alleged has absolutely no place in our community,” said the mayor’s statement.
Associated Press - February 2, 2012
NEWTON (AP) — The Newton elementary school teacher facing child pornography charges has resigned before the school district had a chance to fire him.
The superintendent says 34-year-old David Ettlinger submitted his letter of resignation on Tuesday, the day before a disciplinary hearing was scheduled to be held.
Ettlinger is accused of recording a sexual assault on a family friend under the age of 14.
State police also allege he had images of child pornography on his home computer.
Ettlinger was a second-grade teacher at the city’s Underwood Elementary School for 11 years. He has pleaded not guilty.
CBS News (Boston) - February 8, 2012
WOBURN (CBS/AP) — A former Newton elementary school teacher already charged with indecent assault and disseminating child pornography is now also accused of assaulting a girl he babysat.
Thirty-four-year-old David Ettlinger was indicted Wednesday on charges that include five counts of aggravated indecent assault and battery on a child under the age of 14.
Prosecutors say the girl was not one of Ettlinger’s students.
Ettlinger was targeted by federal investigators in Louisiana for allegedly participating in a global child pornography network.
Ettlinger resigned from his job as a second grade teacher last week.
He was arraigned on the new charges Wednesday and ordered held on $50,000 bail.
His attorney, Tanis Yannetti, did not take questions from reporters afterwards, but she did read a brief statement.
“Obviously, it’s disappointing to hear about these new allegations. However, my client has the full support of his family and we are now in the beginning stages of investigating the case. And once again, we ask you to respect the privacy of my client (and) his family as they continue to deal with the process.”
CBS News (Boston) - February 27, 2012
NEWTON (CBS) – A Newton teacher charged with child pornography is now accused of taking secret photos of kids in the classroom.
Investigators say students had no idea David Ettlinger was taking their picture.
WBZ-TV’s Kate Merrill was told the photos of his young students are creepy and upsetting. Many are of their body parts from low angles inside the school and even out on the playground.
She didn’t want to be identified, but a Newton mother says what happened at her daughter’s school is not OK.
“Totally traumatized, you would not wish this event on any parent,” said the mother.
The children involved in the child porn cases are not students at the Underwood School in Newton where Ettlinger taught second grade, but police have now found images of his students in his private collection.
Parents tell WBZ they had to identify their children in photos snapped secretly by Ettlinger in the classroom and on the playground.
“There were pictures taken at the school, and of course we found that very disturbing,” says the mother. “A number of people were called in to identify the pictures.”
Sources say the pictures were taken without the kids’ knowledge and they are of various body parts.
One mother tells WBZ it looked as if a hidden camera snapped it from under the desk or the jungle gym.
District Attorney Gerry Leone confirms the pictures saying, they found, “Pictures that appeared to have been taken by the defendant of students at the school where the defendant worked.”
The D.A. stresses the pictures are not pornographic and that the kids are fully clothed and he could not face criminal charges for them. At this point no student was assaulted.
Parents hope the new developments help to keep Ettlinger behind bars longer and many are working to make sure he faces the stiffest penalties possible.
CBS NEWS (Boston) - February 28, 2012
NEWTON (CBS) – A grand jury returned a six-count indictment Tuesday against a former Newton teacher charged with child pornography possession.
David Ettlinger is now charged with sexually assaulting two children and recording the abuse. He was already facing child porn charges.
On Monday, WBZ-TV broke the news that Ettlinger was accused of taking secret photos of kids in his classroom for several years.
“I think it’s terribly troubling and disturbing, and I think the parents of those children must be terribly upset,” said Kristin Ardlie, a parent.
Prosecutors say Ettlinger snapped many photos of students in his class without their knowledge. The kids are fully clothed, but the pictures focus on various body parts taken at low angles.
Last month, Ettlinger was arrested on child porn charges. The victims in those cases were not students at Underwood.
Monday’s accusations, however, include many photos of students in his class over the past several years, according to the school’s superintendent.
“The fact that students didn’t know, that’s what is most upsetting, that these pictures were taken and they didn’t know. Obviously whatever we can do to prevent this from happening, but this was somebody who did this in a very calculated way,” said Fleishman.
The district attorney’s office says the new photos are not pornographic. Because the kids were fully clothed, new criminal charges may not be filed.
The school, meanwhile, continues to provide counseling and support to students.
AP/CBS NEWS (Boston) - March 1, 2012
David Ettlinger pleaded not guilty Thursday in Suffolk Superior Court two counts each of aggravated assault and battery on a child under 14, posing a child in a state of nudity, and secretly photographing a nude or semi-nude person.
Prosecutors said Ettlinger undressed and fondled the victims, identified as two girls both under the age of 14, as they slept in 2009. Authorities say he video recorded both assaults.
The former Underwood Elementary School teacher is not accused of assaulting any of his students. His lawyer did not comment.
On Monday, WBZ-TV broke the news that Ettlinger was accused of taking secret photos of kids in his classroom for several years.
Prosecutors said Ettlinger snapped many photos of students in his class without their knowledge over several years. The kids were fully clothed, but the pictures focused on various body parts taken at low angles.
David Ettlinger, 35, of Brighton, was sentenced in a Louisiana federal court on Tuesday. He pleaded guilty in August 2012 to the charge of engaging in a child exploitation enterprise in connection with his membership in the Dreamboard Child Exploitation bulletin board.
Ettlinger was also sentenced to lifetime supervision following the end of his prison term, according to authorities.
Ettlinger still faces a slew of charges in Massachusetts, including several counts of sexual assault of a child under 14.
"Children should not be victims," U.S. Attorney Stephanie Finley said in a statement. "This sentence sends a strong message to people who abuse children that they will pay a heavy price for their actions."
Ettlinger was arrested at his Brighton home in January 2012 and charged with possession of child pornography. He was teaching second grade at Underwood Elementary School at the time of his arrest, and he was first hired to work in the Newton Public Schools at Peirce Elementary School in 2000. He resigned shortly after his arrest.
After Ettlinger’s arrest, prosecutors said they found child pornography and a video of him sexually assaulting a girl under 14.
Further investigation uncovered other videos of Ettlinger allegedly assaulting young girls, some of whom he was babysitting. None of the victims were his students, though prosecutors did discover he had taken inappropriate photos of students at school without them knowing.
“The sexual abuse of an innocent child by a teacher is one of the most heartbreaking violations of trust imaginable,” said Special Agent Raymond Parmer. “Investigating and prosecuting the perpetrators of these horrendous crimes is one of our highest priorities and today’s sentencing ensures this predator will never again have the opportunity to harm another child.”
Ettlinger’s arrest was the result an investigation that began in 2009 that targeted 72 individuals and 500 other participants from around the world believed to be part of the private, members-only online bulletin board.
Members traded a massive library of graphic images, authorities said, and the creation of new images was encouraged. Users accessed the board through proxy servers and materials were often encrypted. Members used aliases, or screen names, and Ettlinger went by “Eel,” according to federal prosecutors.
Evidence obtained during the investigation of Dreamboard revealed that at least 38 children across the world had been sexually abused at the hands of members of the group.
Representatives for the Middlesex and Suffolk district attorney offices said there is no timetable for when his trials in Massachusetts will begin, as prosecutors have been awaiting the conclusion of the federal case before proceeding with their own.
Former Newton Teacher Sentenced 45 Years For Child Porn
CBS News (Boston) - January 8, 2013
BOSTON (CBS) – A former Newton elementary school teacher accused of sexually assaulting children and trading child pornography online has been sentenced to 45 years in prison.
Last August, David Ettlinger pleaded guilty to engaging in a child exploitation enterprise. Evidence showed that he had been an active member of Dreamboard, an online child pornography bulletin board, since 2009.
Ettlinger also took secret photos of students at Underwood Elementary School in Newton, where he was a second grade teacher.
In addition to his prison term, Ettlinger was sentenced to lifetime supervised release.
By Joe Dwinell
Boston Herald - January 9, 2013
The sentencing allows Ettlinger to be returned to Massachusetts to face charges that he assaulted three girls from the Boston area and recorded the encounters.
Ettlinger, 35, appeared for his sentencing in a Shreveport courtroom with his parents present, nearly one year after his arrest shocked Newton residents and school officials. Ettlinger grew up in Newton and taught in the city’s schools for 12 years. He was a popular second-grade teacher at Underwood Elementary School at the time of his arrest last January.
Ettlinger, who pleaded guilty to one federal count of engaging in a child exploitation enterprise, will also be under supervision for the rest of his life after he has served his prison term, federal prosecutors said.
“The sexual abuse of an innocent child by a teacher is one of the most heartbreaking violations of trust imaginable,” Raymond Parmer, a special agent in charge of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement in New Orleans, said in a press release. The agency led the investigation into Dreamboard, the online child pornography site that Ettlinger frequented.
Ettlinger appeared before US District Judge S. Maurice Hicks for a hearing that lasted about an hour.
“Today’s sentencing ensures this predator will never again have the opportunity to harm another child,” Parmer said in a statement.
Ettlinger said he was genuinely sorry, said Jennifer Culotta, his attorney.
Ettlinger requested treatment in prison, she said.
“My client wants help and wants treatment,” Culotta said. “I hope, and my client hopes, that any of the victims in the case begin to heal.”
According to federal court documents, Ettlinger made more than 100 posts on Dreamboard between June 2009 and August 2010 and often visited a section for video of children under 13. His frequent participation earned him VIP status on Dreamboard, a site that federal investigators describe as a worldwide network that promoted the sexual abuse of young children.
Ettlinger is among more than 40 people who have been sentenced to prison for their role in Dreamboard.
The end of the federal case means that state authorities can bring Ettlinger back to Massachusetts.
Here he faces multiple charges, among them, indecent assault of a child and posing a child in a state of nudity.
In addition to his teaching job, Ettlinger also advertised his services as a baby sitter. At least one of the three girls he is alleged to have assaulted was a child he was hired to baby-sit.
None of the three girls involved in the state cases were his students. He has pleaded not guilty to those charges.
Jake Wark, a spokesman for the Suffolk district attorney’s office, said court officials have not scheduled a date for Ettlinger’s local court appearance. Wark would not comment on whether Ettlinger is likely to also plead guilty in state court.
“That’s a decision he’ll make,” Wark said.
By Chloe Gotsis
Wicked Local - January 14, 2013
Gov. Deval Patrick signed “an act relative to background checks” or H4307 Jan. 11, making the Bay State the last state in the nation to require teachers, bus drivers, special education professionals and day care providers to undergo fingerprinted federal background checks and to allow school systems access to the federal database. A group of city employees put together last spring to study Newton’s hiring processes after the an arrest of a Newton teacher on child pornography charges advocated for the passage of the law.
“We certainly think it’s positive,” Fleishman said Monday. “Whatever we can do to ensure our schools are safe and we secure ,we are certainly supportive of that.”
Police arrested David Ettlinger, a second grade teacher at the Underwood Elementary School and charged him possession of child pornography in January 2012. He was later charged with a host of other child pornography related charge--including indecent assault of a child under 14 and posing a child in a state of nudity. He was sentenced in a Louisiana federal court last week to serve 45 years in federal prison for his involvement in an online child pornography forum promoting sexual assault of children under 12.
Ettlinger’s arrest caused many Newton parents to call for tougher hiring processes in the city. However, access to the federal databases provided by the law wouldn’t have flagged Ettlinger’s application since he had no prior criminal record.
Both the city and the Newton Public Schools conduct Criminal Offender Record Information or CORI checks on all new hires and current employees, volunteers, interns, seasonal employees and subcontractors. CORI reports track a person’s criminal history in the state even if their charges were dismissed or had a finding of not guilty. Prior to the passage of H4307, school districts and day care facilities had no way of checking whether a person committed a crime in another state.
“Certainly, just having the CORI checks was limiting,” Fleishman told the TAB.
Fleishman said the law that closes a loophole in criminal background checks “recognizes the realities of the world” and he is grateful the Legislature approved it and the governor signed it.
Under the law, all newly hired teachers, school employees, bus drivers, subcontractors, early education professionals must undergo fingerprinted state and national background checks prior to the start of the 2013-2014 school year. Current school employees have until the start of the 2016-2017 school year to undergo fingerprinted state and national background checks.
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