Earlier today, a Madison East High School business and marketing teacher was arrested for allegedly attempting to produce child pornography using hidden recording devices.
A federal grand jury indictment charges David Kruchten with trying to visually record seven different minors in order to produce sexually explicit content.
In a statement to WORT, Madison Metropolitan School District spokesperson Tim LeMonds gave the school’s response to the allegations and arrest.
“This news is incredibly disturbing to the MMSD family and our community, and we want to assure the community that we are doing everything we can do to support our students and community through this really, unimaginably challenging time,” LeMonds says. “Together, as a community, East High School and the district will get through this by pulling together in support of one another, and we will always do what is in the best interest of our students.”
Last month, Isthmus reported that East High students attending a business and marketing competition in Minneapolis for the school’s DECA program found hidden cameras in their hotel rooms.
Kruchten advised the DECA program, and was given the Wisconsin DECA Red Apple Award in recognition of “outstanding service to Wisconsin DECA and marketing education” in 2018.
The federal indictment only lists charges from on or about January 20th and October 27th from last year, but Isthmus reports the Hennepin County attorney’s office has received findings from the Minneapolis Police Department about last month’s incident.
Those findings could result in additional charges being made against Kruchten.
Isthmus also reports that the dates from October align with a DECA conference held in Wisconsin Dells.
In a written statement released today, Wisconsin Attorney General Kaul said, “This indictment alleges criminal conduct that is an unconscionable betrayal of trust.”
Kaul also thanks those who worked with the Wisconsin Department of Justice on the case, and affirmed that the department would “continue working to ensure that there is full accountability for the crimes alleged in this case.”
In the same press release, United States attorney Scott Blader said his “office is committed to vigorously investigating those who target children and prosecuting them to the fullest extent of the law.”
If convicted, Kruchten will face a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison for each account, and could receive up to 30 years.
Isthmus reports that Kruchten pleaded “not guilty” during his first court appearance earlier today. He is scheduled to be back in court next Wednesday.
Photo Credit: Bohao Zhao