HOUSTON — An HISD elementary school teacher is facing federal charges for alleged possession and distribution of child pornography.

Robert Peri, a music teacher at Memorial Elementary School, was arrested Wednesday at his home in Sugar Land. In October, Federal officials received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children regarding alleged distribution of child pornography from Peri’s e-mail account.

According to court documents, Peri used a personal computer and an HISD computer to distribute 263 images of child porn. This distribution included, according to court records, sending the images, commenting on images, commenting on collections of child porn and requests for passwords to albums containing child porn.

During an interview with investigators, Peri admitted to having a flash drive in his briefcase and a computer in a spare bedroom that both contained child pornography, court records show. He allegedly told investigators he sent and received child porn with others via e-mail and that he used the pictures to masturbate.

Investigators said they uncovered more child porn on two of Peri’s desktop computers as well as two other flash drives.

HISD released the following statement on Peri:

“HISD has learned that a Memorial Elementary School teacher has been arrested by authorities. Given the seriousness of the allegations, the employee has been placed on administrative leave. We take situations such as this very seriously, and we are cooperating fully with law enforcement officials.”

Across from Peri's Greatwood home one of his longtime neighbors, Patti Shust, said the news of his arrest has been very upsetting.

“This is just shocking," Shust said. "This is just unbelievable. I am very, very upset that children are involved in this.”

According to Shust, Peri is very well liked in his community.

“In person he’s the nicest... kindest helper. It makes me think twice about people now," she said.

Geoffrey Womack, Peri's attorney, said he expects Peri to have his bond next week adding he does not believe Peri is a danger to society citing that he has no criminal record.

Womack said because Peri lives in close proximity to a school, if Peri makes bond, he’ll likely have to move and wear an ankle monitor while the charges are pending.

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