James Loganbill, 58, a 31-year veteran teacher from Olathe, Kansas, was arrested last month on a charge of reckless stalking targeting a 10-year-old student by allegedly photographing her
A former Kansas elementary school teacher has been charged with reckless stalking after prosecutors say the a cache of more than 240 photos and videos of a fourth-grader on his devices.
The arrest of James Loganbill, 58, of Olathe, last month has sparked protests in the community, with parents calling for tougher laws aimed at protecting children from predatory behavior of adults.
Loganbill, a teacher in the Olathe School District for 31 years, resigned from Meadow Lane Elementary School in March when the stalking allegation against him first came to light.
According to Johnson County prosecutors, some of Loganbill’s fourth-grade students reported his behavior to officials after allegedly observing him photographing their 10-year-old classmate at school.
Investigators said they ultimately discovered 210 photos and 31 videos depicting the girl on Loganbill’s phone and iPad, which were taken between August 2019 and March 2020.
Loganbill resigned from Meadow Lane Elementary School in Olathe, Kansas, in March after the accusations against him had first come to light
Some of the still images reportedly showed the child bending over, and one video depicted her lifting a leg toward her head, according to court documents.
Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe said investigators allege that Loganbill’s actions were sexually motivated.
Loganbill’s search history revealed that he had looked up the girl’s name online 39 times, according to a Fox 4 KC report from June.
The young victim told investigators that Loganbill never physically touched her, but that she was afraid of him.
During a meeting held last week between the girl’s parents, elected officials and law enforcement representatives, the victim’s mother revealed that her daughter’s apprehension about being in close proximity to Loganbill was such that a friend would switch desks with her in class to get her away from him, reported Kansas City Star.
Investigators said they discovered 210 photos and 31 videos depicting the girl on Loganbill’s phone and iPad, which were taken between August 2019 and March 2020
Loganbill was arrested on June 12 on a count of reckless stalking, which carries a maximum sentence of up to a year in prison.
DA Howe said he believes the charge is inadequate, but the facts of the case do not meet the threshold to bring a more serious charge, like child exploitation, against the former teacher.
Loganbill’s attorney said he believes his client is innocent.
Following Loganbill’s arrest, a group of 200 parents and students staged a protest outside the Olathe Public Schools office, demanding accountability and tougher regulations, according to KMBC.
‘Kansas is a little bit behind the times as it relates to essentially this type of behavior falling through the cracks,’ said Sarah Hart Weir, a longtime friend of the victim’s family, who is a Republican candidate for the US Congress.
The school district released a statement, saying in part: ‘the safety and security of our students and staff is our top priority. Any instance of reported misconduct against a student or staff member is taken seriously and thoroughly investigated.’
On June 23, the parents of the victim sat down with the district attorney, members of the US Congress, state senators and Hair Weir to discuss how to close loopholes in state law addressing crimes against children.
‘Whether you’re a layperson, a legislator, a prosecutor or a police officer, we all recognize there’s a hole in this statute for this type of conduct,’ Howe said.
Loganbill is currently out on bond. He is due back in court on August 18.
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