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Former Maryland Teacher Arrested For Child Erotic Content Possession

A former social studies teacher, Michael Hislop, at St. Mary’s High School in Annapolis, Maryland, was arrested on Wednesday for possessing images of child pornography, accessed both at his home and at the school, police stated.

Hislop, aged 26, from Arnold, faced 16 misdemeanor counts of possessing child pornography, according to court records. He got released on recognizance soon after his arrest.

Hislop, who began teaching at St. Mary’s in 2022, was put on administrative leave right after the school got wind of the police investigation, said Christian Kendzierski, executive director of communications at the Archdiocese of Baltimore. His employment was terminated during that leave in February, although Hislop’s name still appeared as a teacher on the school’s website on Thursday afternoon.

At the time Hislop went on leave, he was up-to-date with child protection training, Kendzierski noted.

As per charging documents, Anne Arundel Police got a tip-off in January from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, which contained 22 files of apparent child pornography on two separate IP addresses.

After scrutinizing the uploaded content and issuing subpoenas to Comcast and Verizon, detectives found child pornography linked to St. Mary’s IP address in downtown Annapolis and also Hislop’s home in Arnold.

Police spokesperson Marc Limansky remarked that though “no images were found on school-owned devices or computers, investigators suspect Hislop might have used the school’s network for illegal activities related to images found on his personal devices.”

Anne Arundel County Police Department and the Archdiocese of Baltimore confirmed that there’s no indication anyone at the school was affected by or involved in Hislop’s actions.

On Thursday, defense attorney Peter O’Neill stated his client intended to plead not guilty and declined to comment further.

Hislop is scheduled to appear for trial on May 14 in the Anne Arundel County District Court in Annapolis, as per the Maryland Judiciary.

In a statement, the Archdiocese of Baltimore emphasized its commitment to protecting children. It urged anyone with knowledge of this occurrence or any other related to the abuse of minors to come forward and report it immediately to law enforcement.

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