A 4th grade teacher accused of having a stash of child porn has admitted to police he's been collecting the illegal images for at least a decade.
Thomas Warner taught 4th grade in the Paradise Valley Unified School District for 6 years. The district says, until his arrest, they never had any problems with him.
According to police, this teacher confessed to keeping hundreds of images and movies on his laptop and on thumb drives.
“Our first action is to place the teacher on leave which is what we did as soon as we received notification from the police department,” says Marty Macurak from Paradise Valley Unified.
Warner taught at North Ranch Elementary School in northeast Phoenix. According to the district, he has DPS clearance, which is required for teachers, and there were never any problems in the classroom.
“We have not heard any parents express any concerns about their children. We had no indication from police that one of our children has been harmed,” says Macurak.
According to court documents, Warner admitted to being sexually attracted to young boys. And he knew what he was doing was illegal.
He allegedly kept hundreds of images of 8 to 12-year old boys on several thumb drives in order to hide his activities from his wife of nearly 2 decades.
He told officers that he “uses his position as a teacher to compensate for the guilt he feels about viewing the images."
Warner was turned in by a computer repair person who spotted the images while working on his laptop. Police then searched his Moon Valley home and discovered hundred of other images.
Police say it doesn't appear Warner knew any of the children in the pictures, but they stress the investigation is not over.
We reached out to a number of computer repair companies in the valley, including Data Doctors. They tell us it’s their policy to call police if they find anything that could be illegal.
The teacher's bond was set at $100,000.
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