Benjamin Childress: High School Orchestra Director Busted for Soliciting Underage Boy

Categories: Crime, Education

benjaminchildress.jpg
Manvel PD
Benjamin Childress: Says he answered a Craigslist ad.
The orchestra director at Pasadena's Dobie High School has been arrested for online solicitation of a 15-year-old boy, police in Pearland say.

Benjamin Clark Childress, 26, met the boy through a Craigslist ad and was found drunk in a car parked with him at a remote field in Manvel on March 24, police say. It was the boy who had placed the ad; the two then had phone and text messages that were "sexual in nature," a Pearland police spokesman says.

Childress was arrested for public intoxication and then released.

Manvel police then contacted the Brazoria County DA's office for help, and they turned to a Pearland officer who specializes in Internet sex crimes. He "uncovered evidence that supported the suspect's initial account of how he met the juvenile," police say.

Manvel police wanted to be sure they "had enough evidence" before arresting Childress on solicitation charges, Pearland spokesman Lt. Onesimo Lopez tells Hair Balls.

He was arrested Monday for online solicitation of a minor, a second degree felony.

Pearland describes Childress as a teacher; a Dobie staff directory lists him as orchestra director.

Childress faces two to 20 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

Update: Pasadena school district spokesperson Candace Ahlfinger tells Hair Balls Childress has resigned. He had been with the district for a year, and had been placed on administrative leave after the arrest.

"We always takes these things very seriously," she said, and the district's police department is conducting its own investigation.

The district sent out a letter to members of the Dobie High orchestra:

Dear Parents:

The safety and well-being of our students and staff is a top priority at Dobie High School. Therefore, I want to make you aware of a situation that has occurred.

The district received a report that Mr. Benjamin Childress has been charged with online solicitation of a minor from outside the district. Immediately upon hearing the report, the district placed the teacher on administrative leave pending the outcome of the police investigation and Mr. Childress has since resigned. Our Pasadena ISD police department is also actively investigating.

No additional incidents have been reported at this time. However, the Pasadena ISD police are asking for your help. If you have knowledge of this incident or any other incident involving this teacher and any student on our campus, please report your concerns to the Detective Sgt. Arnold Magana, Pasadena ISD Police Department at 713-740-0200.

Any time a teacher violates the trust of a child, it makes it more difficult for the thousands of teachers who care deeply for the safety and well-being of the children. We will continue to work together to provide a safe and secure place for your children to learn.

Thank you for your concern.

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14 comments
Samanthaa30
Samanthaa30

Yes. What he did was wrong, but guys do this all the time. And was both of their faults. They both still would have done it if the roles were replaced. I knew Childress personally and he was a very nice and talented man. You can't judge him by one fault in his life because every one needs love. Some people just find unconventional ways to get it.

Guest44
Guest44

This stupid little 15-year-old shit should rot in hell.

New Orleans Lady
New Orleans Lady

Ben is a good guy. I trust him with my child and have .... I'm sure this was a misunderstanding.

Guest2
Guest2

So the "victim" posted the ad? So no one was hurt by this? This guy's life is over, no reason to go to prison over a non-violent crime.

Pimptoutprep
Pimptoutprep

If he answered and AD on Craigslist, you must be 18 to post, I'm sure this is a misunderstanding where the kid lied about his age, and this isn't even a matter about the students, this was obviously someone who was out of the district. CTFD.

o:
o:

CRAP HE TAUGHT US

New Orleans Lady
New Orleans Lady

Let me clarify by misunderstanding I mean there was no real victim here. Some 15 year olds are more precocious than others ... and they don't always tell the truth about their ages.

Polly
Polly

He had a duty under the law to make sure that the kid was of age. Willfully blindness is not a defense. He knew what he was doing. And his roommate said that he was constantly bringing guys home who looked too young.

Annie
Annie

Yeah, he had to be 18. People who post on Craigslist are always forthcoming and truthful in the postings, their posts are never deceitful in nature. Hey, I have the title to the San Francisco Bridge I'd like to see you, only $100, a real bargain.

Johngoyeau
Johngoyeau

"Sick muthafucker I go to that Skool"

Obviously that school fails you in many ways, including manners and spelling.

Matey
Matey

It seems he did not know the age of the boy. However, ignorance does not get one out of being convicted sometimes. This man will be punished even though he was not aware of the boy's age.

Annie
Annie

I was going to say the same thing. It seems to be lacking in schools across this great nation as my 13 year old nephew speaks/writes the same way. Hell, the boy does not even spell the name of his own school correctly.

dobie_is_awesome
dobie_is_awesome

shutup i go there too dumbasses. childress IS a sick "motherfucker"

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