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St. Joseph’s Teacher Avoids Jail After Charge of Child Porn Possession

74-Year-Old "Brother" Lived at All-Boys School Led By New Brunswick Councilman
John Spalding
John Spalding MCPO

METUCHEN, NJ—On June 21, 2015, Middlesex County investigators determined that a teacher who lived on the St. Joseph's High School campus maintained child pornography on a computer.

Ten days later, a New Brunswick City Councilman who had been the school's Principal for nine years, announced he would be "assuming a new role" at St. Joseph's.

But it was another seven months before the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office (MCPO) finally charged 74-year-old John Spalding with a single count of possession of child pornography. 

Spalding was allowed to "voluntarily surrender" at the Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick, according to the February 18 press release.

His bail was set at $75,000, but he still has not spent a minute in jail, according to the county's Adult Corrections Center.

But what took so long for Spalding to be charged?

"The charge was filed after a search of the computer was completed," reads the MCPO release.  "The investigation began after an unidentified official contacted police."

"I am not the unidentified official," said former Principal John Anderson, who was first elected to the New Brunswick City Council in 2012.

"My shift to the President's Office had nothing to do with this," Anderson explained.  "The Brothers of the Sacred Heart Provincial Council was shifting responsibilities/people throughout their schools where they thought they could best be used to help out their schools (before this incident), thus the moving of a person from the south (a Brothers school there) to here and myself to the Presidents Offices to work with and take some pressure off the current President, so he could concentrate on other matters."

The MCPO press release announcing the arrest was deferential to Spalding, referring to him as "Brother Spalding." 

The charge was filed by Detective Kevin Doherty of the Metuchen Police Department and Detective David Abromaitis of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.