OCONEE COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL) — One former middle school teacher from Malcolm Bridge Middle School was sentenced to prison for possessing child pornography.
56-year-old Ira New, III was sentenced to 37 months of federal prison followed by 10 years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography.
New is also required to register for life as a sex offender after his release.
In a prepared statement, Acting U. S. Attorney Peter Leary shared the frustration of this case.
“Ira New was entrusted with the care and safety of middle school students at a time when he was actively victimizing children by possessing pornography of kids in the same age group. Every time an image of child pornography is viewed, the demented business of sexually exploiting innocent children only grows stronger. New—and predators like him—will be held accountable for their crimes against children in the Middle District of Georgia,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Peter Leary.
According to court documents, Yahoo investigators gave cyber tips to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) in Aug. 2019. The cyber tip was sent in regards to 27 images of children at nudist colonies.
After Yahoo’s investigation, the page was linked back to New who at the time was an eighth-grade teacher at Malcolm Bridge Middle School in Watkinsville.
Around the time of this investigation, New self-reported showing a picture of a topless female to his class.
New resigned from teaching at Malcolm Bridge Middle School.
Upon a search in Sept. 2019, New allowed forensic agents to view his phone and discovered child pornography. 94 images of child pornography were found of girls between the ages of 12 to 14.
The case was investigated by the GBI and Assistant U.S. Attorney Shanelle Booker is prosecuting the case.