'Role Model' Teacher Sentenced to 8 years in Prison for Possessing Child Pornography

Frank Richard Beyer, 75, pleaded guilty after police found disturbing amount of pornographic content in his possession.

A 75-year-old former elementary school principal from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, was sentenced to 97 months in prison for the possession of child pornography that included images of underage boys exposing their genitals and performing sexual acts.

Frank Richard Beyer, aka "Rick Beyer", had pleaded guilty on March 5, 2020, to possession of child pornography. Beyer held the position of an elementary school principal and taught sixth grade in New York, before moving to Florida.

Uploaded Child Pornography Online

Beyer came under the scanner of law enforcement after several tips about an internet user uploading child pornography to online platforms were provided to the FBI investigators. Among the tips that the authorities received were the former educator's email address that led them straight to him, court documents stated.

Representational Picture wikimediacommons

When a search warrant was executed at Beyer's home on 20 November 2019, officers found a disturbing amount of pornographic content in his possession. External storage devices containing several videos and pictures of children, some below the age of twelve, engaging in graphic sexual acts with adults or other children were recovered. Beyer had also used devices such as an iPad and a laptop.

If that was not enough, forensic examination of the devices led to the finding of over 1,200 videos and nearly 4,000 pictures depicting child pornography. In addition to this, the authorities also learned that the septuagenarian had been in communication with at least one person through an encrypted messaging application, and shared pornographic material with them.

From Leader to Offender

According to NewsChannel 9, the Syracuse City School district confirmed that Beyer had worked from 1967 until his retirement in 2002. During his tenure at the district, he served as an administrator and teacher.

The St. Lawrence University website states that Beyer graduated in 1966, and was a leader of its alumni council. He was known for his dedication towards advocacy for LGBTQ, along with the equality and inclusion of groups that were underrepresented. In 2018, Minority Access named him a National Role Model.