Sunday, May 18, 2003

Teacher accused in child porn case

The Associated Press

LOUISVILLE - A Louisville teacher has been charged with receiving child pornography following a U.S. Postal Service investigation.

David L. Meredith, 43, was arrested Thursday at his apartment after postal inspectors delivered five videotapes to him depicting children engaged in sexually explicit activity, according to an affidavit filed with Meredith's arrest warrant in U.S. District Court.

Inspectors also searched Meredith's residence and seized images of child pornography that appear to have been printed from his home computer, according to the affidavit.

Meredith, who teaches choir at Highland Middle School, appeared in court Friday. He was ordered held until a detention hearing on Monday.

Federal prosecutors have asked that he be held without bond.

Jefferson County Public Schools spokeswoman Lauren Roberts said that if Meredith is released, he will be reassigned to an administrative job and will have no teaching duties while the case is pending. A conviction would be grounds for termination, she said.

Meredith has worked for Jefferson County schools since 1981. His employment records indicate no previous problems, Roberts said.

The investigation of Meredith began after postal authorities in Florida investigating an alleged child pornography distributor found his name on documents showing he had made at least six purchases from the distributor.

The affidavit said that on April 8, postal inspectors mailed a catalog and order form to Meredith, which explicitly offered child pornography for sale. On April 18, postal inspectors received an order from Meredith for five videotapes depicting children in sexually explicit activity and a money order for $450, the affidavit said.

The maximum penalty for the offense is 15 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

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