Teacher held on child porn charges

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COEUR d’ALENE — Bond was set Friday at $350,000 for a local teacher charged with 10 counts of possession of child pornography.

Jeremy R. Campbell, 35, a teacher in the Plummer-Worley Joint School District who previously taught in Coeur d’Alene, was arrested Thursday following an investigation by local police and members of the state’s International Crimes Against Children task force, or ICAC.

At his first appearance in Coeur d’Alene’s First District Magistrate Court, Campbell asked for a public defender. The request was denied because his income exceeded the maximum allowed for the state to pay for his defense counsel.

Campbell, who lives in Coeur d’Alene, is officially charged with 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a child by possessing sexually exploitative material. Each felony count is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Plummer-Worley Superintendent Judi Sharrett sent a letter home to parents and guardians Thursday letting them know about the situation.

“This morning we were made aware one of our teachers, Mr. Jeremy Campbell was taken into custody by the police pending further investigation,” the letter said. “The District is taking this matter very seriously and following all appropriate protocols.”

Campbell taught fifth-graders at Fernan Elementary School in Coeur d’Alene from October 2013 to June 2014. Coeur d’Alene School District spokesman Scott Maben said Campbell was on a one-year contract and was not rehired at the end of the school year.

Campbell also previously taught fifth grade at John Brown Elementary in Rathdrum, in the Lakeland School District, according to Campbell’s Facebook profile.

On social media, Campbell is listed as an eighth-grade teacher in Plummer. This was his first year teaching in Plummer, Sharrett said.

More charges could be pending in the case, according to court testimony.

If Campbell is found to have distributed sexually exploitative material, he could be sentenced to up to 30 years and fined $50,000 for each count.

The child porn bust was the second this week by ICAC teams. On Wednesday, ICAC investigators arrested 26-year-old Leonard L. Stewart, of Coeur d’Alene, for allegedly having child porn. His bond was set at $250,000.

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