San Antonio, Texas, police officers arrested a local high school teacher and church group leader Wednesday. He is accused of hosting sex parties with teenage boys in his home and it appears his neighbors never even knew.
The suspect, Jared Anderson, 28, confessed to lewd conduct with at least 10 teenage boys. Local law enforcement charged him with one count of indecency with a child, a third-degree felony, and two second-degree felony counts of sexual performance of a child, according to the Bexar County jail records. The records did not indicate bail amounts. However, FOX 29 reported the county set bond at $150,000, noting that the San Antonio Police Department (SAPD) continues to probe the matter and there could be as many as 12 charges upon the investigation’s completion.
SAPD spokesman Sgt. Jesse Salame said: “This all stems from a report that came in a few days ago where two victims presented themselves over at one of the substations and reported that this individual had hosted them for some parties at his house,” according to the San Antonio Express-News.
Salame stated victims told investigators Anderson played games with numerous boys at the sex parties held over several months. Seven of them, who ranged from 15- to 17-years-old, attended one of these parties on February 12 where a sign on the door purportedly read: “The last one to strip naked loses.”
“Another incident involved suspect challenging a 17-year-old to see who can be the most obscene. It involved the suspect and the 17-year-old of sending pictures of their genitals to each other. The incident was reported last week to the church and the church banned suspect from returning,” said the SAPD spokesman.
Anderson was a member of the local Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, where he served as a group leader. The church’s national office issued a statement in response to the situation:
“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has zero tolerance for abuse of any kind. When we learned of this situation, local leaders reported it immediately to law enforcement. Anderson has been removed from all responsibilities within the local congregation. The Church is supportive of the efforts of authorities to investigate and prosecute this matter.”
Salame said officers spoke with numerous victims, parents, and officials at Judson Independent School District where Anderson taught high school English. Detectives searched Anderson’s home. KSAT 12 (ABC) indicated Anderson is suspected of possessing child pornography.
The San Antonio ABC-TV affiliate also reported the arrest blindsighted neighbors who had no idea of any of Anderson’s illicit sexual activity with teenage boys. Neighbor Mark Schenk said he never noticed anything unusual at Anderson’s home. “He’s always outside playing with his wife and kid,” he said. “I’ve never seen extra cars. I’ve never seen teenage boys running around the neighborhood or heard anything like that. We’re home quite a bit.”
SAPD believes more minors may come forward. So far, they identified between seven and 10 victims who are between the ages of 15 and 18, the Express-News noted. Salame added: “These are disgusting, graphic acts that he’s been accused of doing, and we need to protect our children, and it’s best that we try to get as much information as we can so that we can make as strong a case as possible against this guy.”
It remains unclear if any of the teenagers were Anderson’s students or even attended Judson High School, where the suspect taught. Judson ISD placed Anderson on administrative leave based on these sexual misconduct allegations. The district issued a statement:
“Judson High School teacher Jared Anderson has been put on administrative leave pending the results of an investigation being conducted by San Antonio Police of allegations of sexual misconduct. Mr. Anderson has been employed by JISD for two and a half years as an English teacher.
Judson ISD is obviously very concerned about these charges and will fully cooperate with ongoing investigation by SAPD, but will let the legal process take its course.”
This arrest marks the second Judson High School teacher taken into custody on sexual misconduct charges with a minor since the beginning of 2016. Breitbart Texas reported that SAPD officers apprehended Mathew John Turner, 34, for the alleged trafficking a person less than 18 years of age and sexual performance by a child. Police documents revealed that Turner took advantage of a 15-year-old homeless girl and forced her to work as a prostitute for money. She told police that Turner, a Judson High School theatre arts teacher, was one of her repeat clients. Turner resigned from his post in early January. His resignation came after the district launched an investigation into an unrelated incident where the parent of a 16-year-old female student accused him of sending inappropriate text messages to her daughter.
Breitbart Texas attempted to reach Judson ISD spokesman Steve Linscomb. The district is closed for spring break this week. He did not return the call.
Follow Merrill Hope on Twitter @OutOfTheBoxMom.