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Middle School Teacher, 49, Pleads Not Guilty To Child Porn Charges

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com)  — A middle school teacher who was allegedly busted in an undercover child porn sting, pleaded not guilty Thursday to multiple federal charges.

Officials allege John David Boyle, a 49-year 0ld eighth-grade teacher, met with an undercover agent who posed as someone who expressed interest in watching child porn with the accused.

The alleged “viewing” was to occur in Boyle’s Covina classroom.

Boyle, of Glendora, was indicted July 2 on a half-dozen counts, including enticement of a minor to engage in criminal sexual activity over the Internet, leading to the alleged molestation of a 14-year-old boy.

The Royal Oak Middle School teacher was also charged with advertising child pornography on the Internet and distribution, receipt, attempted receipt and possession of child pornography, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Michael Wilner set a tentative trial date for Aug. 27.

Boyle was ordered to remain in custody pending trial. The judge at an earlier hearing ruled the prosecution had presented “likely evidence of actual contact with at least one minor.”

Defense attorney Leonard Levine said Thursday that although he had not yet seen all the evidence against his client, the charges against Boyle suggested nothing more than Internet fantasy.

“We’ll know more when we’ve seen everything,” Levine said. “But this has been a well-respected teacher for 27 years. It’s come as a shock to everyone.”

Assistant U.S. Attorney Nicholas Trutanich previously alleged that text messages from Boyle’s cell phone show inappropriate conversations between the teacher and at least one schoolboy. There are also alleged conversations between the teacher and the undercover agent in which Boyle boasts about recent sexual contact with a child.

In another text, Boyle — who prosecutors said used the alias “JuniorHighCoach” — asks the boy in question to “cut school” and meet him for another date, but the boy declined, the prosecutor alleged.

Trutanich alleged that in a later message to the undercover agent, Boyle was referring to the same child when he texted that he “hooked up with a boy six weeks ago.”

The prosecutor said that in another text conversation with agent, Boyle allegedly discussed a different student as “a boy I really like” who is “so cute,” but one with whom he had not had sexual contact.

The undercover agent texted: “I’m sure you will bring him along just right.” Trutanich explained this was a reference to the “grooming” behavior of child predators.

Boyle allegedly answered: “I’m trying.”

Anthony Solis, who represented Boyle at a bond hearing last month, said that the texts were “innocuous. This is not some pedophile grooming a potential target for a sexual assault.”

Prosecutors allege that Boyle engaged in online chats with the undercover agent in the belief that the official shared his sexual interest in underage boys.

According to a federal affidavit, Boyle planned a meeting with the agent, in his classroom, where the two would engage in sexual activity while watching child porn together.

After the undercover agent arrived to the classroom and presented Boyle with child pornography, he allegedly took possession of it. At that time, other agents entered the classroom to question the teacher.

Agents investigating Boyle’s online accounts, allegedly discovered he also used the Internet to distribute child pornography. According to officials, Boyle’s Skype account also indicated he had sexual contact with minors.

If convicted, Boyle faces up to life in prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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