Former Ledyard school employee faces child porn charge

Ledyard — An investigation into the discovery of child pornography on a computer at a Ledyard elementary school has led to a felony charge against a former school employee.

Ledyard police on Friday arrested 53-year-old Webster H. Holland and charged him with first-degree possession of child pornography.

Holland is a former technology paraprofessional in the Ledyard school system who was hired on Aug. 23, 2012, and ended employment on Dec. 6 for “reasons unrelated to the case,” according to a written statement from schools Superintendent Cathy Patterson on behalf of the Board of Education.

On Dec. 13, after Holland had left the school system, Ledyard police and the Ledyard resident state trooper began an investigation into the discovery of “questionable photographs” on a computer at Ledyard Center School by school information technology personnel, Ledyard Police Lt. Michael Finkelstein said in a statement.

While police investigated, the computer was submitted to the Connecticut State Police Forensic Laboratory for examination. The completion of the examination led to an arrest warrant for Holland, who is formerly of Ledyard, Finkelstein said.

“We share the concern that parents and the public at large will have in receiving this news. As a school district, Ledyard upholds high standards of our staff and anyone working with children,” Patterson’s statement reads. “We recognize that staff members are in a position of significant trust and they must be held responsible for adhering to established policies and the law at all times. The district will cooperate with the police investigation should they be called upon to do so. As this is now a police matter, the Board of Education will make no further comment on this matter.”

Holland was arrested on Friday and held in lieu of a $50,000 bond. He is expected for an arraignment at an unspecified later date at New London Superior Court. His current address was not immediately available.

Finkelstein, in his statement, said police continue to work closely with school administrators to ensure the safety of all students.

g.smith@theday.com

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