July 31, 2013 - 7:41 AM
KAMLOOPS – Former teacher Jerry Waselenkoff, 65, was charged with possession of child pornography late last week and local teacher association president Jason Karpuk hopes people will not judge the profession by one person's bad choice.
When asked if this latest charge could affect how people perceive the industry Karpuk says you have to look at the individual, not the profession.
“Individuals make choices and sometimes they make bad choices.” Karpuk says, “I'm sure we can go into any profession and find people making bad decisions.”
As part of the Kamloops Thompson Teachers' Association since 2007, Karpuk says he met Waselenkoff in the 1990s when doing supervision but did not know him well since he retired before Karpuk came on at the association.
While with Kamloops-Thompson School District 73 Waselenkoff acted as special education teacher and created programming to help younger students learn phonics and word recognition.
Karpuk was not in town when news broke of the child pornography charge but says the last 'big one' was quite a few years ago. Brett Anthony Nelson, a former Kamloops teacher, was charged with child luring over the internet and had his teaching certificate revoked in 2004.
The investigation that led to the single charge against Waselenekoff began in October 2012 and he is expected to appear in court this September.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013