Phewwww! We can mark another name off the FBI's 10 Most Wanted List. Former teacher Eric Justin Toth has been captured in Nicaragua. The suspected child pornographer should be shipped back to the US for prosecution after nearly five years on the run.
Surprised they put this guy on a list that's usually reserved for murderers and terrorists? Don't be. The stuff Toth is accused of is the stuff that keeps parents up at night.
Eric Toth represents exactly what parents fear: a child predator who hurts kids under their very noses. We depend on our senses to spot something off so we can protect our kids. When we get it wrong, when our kids are hurt, it can destroy our very souls.
The former third grade teacher at Washington National Cathedral’s exclusive Beauvoir elementary school had parents so snowed that he was babysitting their children, sleeping at their houses while their parents were away. People trusted him with their kids, and the suspected child pornographer abused their trust and their children.
I can't imagine anything worse. Their poor kids were hurt, and those poor parents have to be kicking themselves for it. If allegations are true, they let a monster into their own homes.
Cops reportedly found a video camera Toth had placed in a school bathroom to capture images of kids when they were naked. The authorities say he took sexually explicit photos of at least one child in his own home. He allegedly made little boys sit on his lap. And when a colleague looked at his camera, he allegedly found it loaded with images of innocent children ... sexually explicit photos.
When Toth was confronted and fired from his job, the nation's most wanted child pornography suspect took off. He was on the run for five years, taking that same charm that he used to disarm parents, to make them feel like they could trust this man with their kids with him.
His capture is a win for the families in D.C., but it's also a big one for parents everywhere, parents who could have been disarmed by a monster, who could have seen their children be victimized because they thought this guy was safe.
What do you make of putting child pornographers on the most wanted list?
Image via FBI