Former Teacher Facing Child Porn Charges Back In Jail

A former middle school and substitute teacher in Carteret County faces charges related to child pornography was placed back in jail after his first court appearance this morning.

Walter Pettit, age 52 of Park Villa Apartments off Old Murdoch Road in Morehead City, was locked up on a $500,000 bail. He made bail Thursday night and was released.

Friday morning, he was in court awaiting his first appearance. The District Attorney's Office asked Judge Cheryl Spencer to increase his bond to $1,000,000. The judge split the difference and Pettit's bond was increased to $750,000.

Deputies placed Pettit back in jail under the new bond. If released, the judge told Pettit that he could not be around anyone under the age of 18 as a condition of his bond.

Deputies say Petitt had thousands of child porn images.

Officials say he is a former teacher at Broad Creek Middle School. We are told he last worked there full-time in December 2008.

Carteret County school officials say since December 2008, Pettit has been substitute teacher in their system. There is no word what schools he has been a substitute at, but school officials do say he has not been at Broad Creek in that time.

They also say the did background checks regularly, and Pettit always cleared them. They report he was taken off the substitute list Thursday.

Carteret County school officials also say law enforcement reports there is no evidence any of the images involved their students.

The Department of Homeland Security and the NC State Bureau of Investigation were involved in the arrest.

Pettit has been charged with two counts of second degree sexual exploitation of a minor and two counts of third degree sexual exploitation of a minor.

Carteret County Sheriff’s Lt. Deborah Stevens said the charges stemmed from Pettit downloading, copying, and possessing countless images of child pornography from the internet.

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