Former Silver Spring Teacher Denied Bail in Sex Abuse Case

Former music teacher Lawrence Welsey Joynes, 55, pleaded guilty to child pornography and now faces 15 sex charges involving minors.

Former Montgomery County educator Lawrence Wesley Joynes pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography. (Credit: Baltimore County Police Department)
Former Montgomery County educator Lawrence Wesley Joynes pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography. (Credit: Baltimore County Police Department)
By Elizabeth Janney

A former educator at New Hampshire Estates Elementary School pleaded guilty this week to a child pornography charge in Baltimore County, moving the case to Montgomery County, where authorities said he was teaching when he sexually abused more than 10 students, according to reports.

Lawrence Wesley Joynes, 55, was arrested on child pornography charges in February when Homeland Security and Baltimore County police found videos and images of children on his computer during an investigation of his home in Dundalk.

After Joynes pleaded guilty to the crime Thursday in Baltimore County Circuit Court, he was ordered to register as a sex offender and sentenced to his time served in jail—he's been at the Baltimore County Detention Center since Feb. 28, 2013.

Joynes was a music teacher who taught in Montgomery County Public Schools for more than 25 years and authorities are now proceeding with the case in which he is accused of sexually abusing his students.

Police found "thousands of images of child pornography" on one computer and individual devices in his home last year, The Gazette reported.

"It was the first step of a process that really began to shed light on what he was doing," Baltimore County prosecutor Lisa Dever said, according to The Washington Post.

After finding the pictures, police alerted Montgomery County detectives, who identified 14 elementary school students as victims of sex abuse while Joynes was a music teacher at New Hampshire Estates Elementary School in Silver Spring.

Charging documents show that Joynes asked students to stay in his classroom during lunch and would record them sucking on his finger or peppermint sticks, according to The Washington Post.

Authorities said that Joynes had sex with another student, who was at Eastern Middle School in Silver Spring, in the 1990s, according to The Gazette

Joynes is charged with 14 counts of sexual abuse of a minor and one third-degree sex offense in Montgomery County, where officials filed the charges Aug. 8.

The assistant state's attorney in Rockville said Joynes impersonated others to avoid being found out and falsified his own death certificate when the middle school victim tried to contact him, according to The Gazettewhich reported the assistant state's attorney deemed him a flight risk.

A Montgomery County District Court judge ordered Joynes held without bail on Friday, stating he was "a danger," according to WTOP.

Joynes has a preliminary hearing scheduled for March 7 in Montgomery County District Court.



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