Teacher faces 40 years for exposing kids to porn, blames adware
A 40-year-old substitute teacher is facing up to 40 years in prison for exposing children to internet pornography.
Julie Amero was convicted on Friday of four counts of risk of injury to a minor.
According to BoingBoing, the teacher blames an an adware infestation. Somehow, the PC may have become infected with pornographic adware, causing inappropriate content to blossom uncontrollably onto her screen.
The police maintained the Amero navigated to pornographic websites during classroom time, but expert witnesses for the defense testified that she could have spawned these windows by navigating to an innocent hairdressing site.
The news reports give no indication that Amero deliberately exposed students to pornography. It sounds like she was surfing the web during her downtime, got the computer infected with spyware, and had it pop back up when students were around.
I don't know enough about computer security to say whether Amero's spyware defense is plausible, but the author of the BoingBoing post seems to think so.
The more horrifying question is how a woman with no prior history of wrongdoing could be facing 40 years in prison for this embarrassing but relatively minor incident. If the teacher was accessing inappropriate content in the classroom, she deserves to be disciplined, maybe even fired. However, it's absurd to be considering jail time because the kids caught a glimpse of a few pop-up ads. People who make child pornography don't usually get 40 years.