Former East Bay teacher pleads not guilty to child porn charges

David Prashker / Photo: Toronto Star

MARTINEZ (KRON) — A former East Bay substitute teacher facing child porn charges pleaded not guilty during his arraignment in Martinez on Tuesday.

David Prashker, 60, of Lafayette, is being accused of possessing child pornography on his laptop then trying to destroy the computer while authorities served a search warrant at his home Feb. 18, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney’s Office.

“The defense requested he be released on his own recognizance with a GPS ankle monitor.  I objected to the release based on the defendant’s potential flight risk and the seriousness of the charges,” Deputy District Attorney Jordan R. Sanders wrote in a press release.

“Having heard from both the defense and myself, the judge denied the release from custody,” said Sanders.

Prashker, 60, was arrested following an investigation by the Contra Costa Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Task Force.

On Feb. 18, authorities with the ICAC Task Force served a search warrant at his residence in the 3600 block of Bickerstaff Rd. in Lafayette.

As officers were attempting to contact Prashker, he fled to the back of the house and threw a laptop computer from his second floor bedroom into the backyard, the district attorney’s office wrote in a press release.

“Forensic examiners recovered the laptop, and an initial analysis revealed its hard drive contained evidence of child pornography,” the DA’s office said.

Prashker was arrested and booked at the Martinez Detention Facility. His bail was initially set at $205,000.

According to officials, Prashker has been a teacher and school administrator for 30 years, having held positions in Toronto, Canada; London, England; and Miami, Florida.

“Most recently, Mr. Prashker has been employed as a substitute teacher at two private schools in central Contra Costa County. The schools have been notified; there is no evidence at this point that Mr. Prashker engaged in any crimes involving the students of either school,” officials said.

Prashker faces a maximum penalty of 44 months in prison, and fines, if convicted.

He is due back in court for a preliminary hearing March 3.

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