Delta teacher charged with child pornography offences
VANCOUVER -- A Delta teacher has been charged with three counts of child pornography-related offences, local Mounties announced Friday.
Elazar Reshef, 52, was charged following an investigation by the Surrey RCMP Internet Child Exploitation Unit. Police say that, because he works as a teacher in the Delta School District, they're releasing information in the interest of public safety.
The investigation began in March last year after an electronic service provider alleged an account user had child pornography in their possession.
Surrey Mounties immediately launched an investigation and, after a review of the evidence, charges were approved against Reshef on Thursday.
"Surrey RCMP’s Internet Child Exploitation team has done a thorough review of all our available evidence. And at this point, no Lower Mainland children have been identified as potential victims," Cpl. Joanie Sidhu told CTV News.
In a letter sent to parents at Gray Elementary, where Reshef taught, the school's principal said the fifth-grade teacher has not worked or been permitted on school property since July 2019, when the district learned of the RCMP investigation.
"District senior staff and administration have worked closely with Surrey RCMP over the past year and are very appreciative of the work the RCMP has done on this matter," Patrick Klassen wrote in the letter.
"Cases such as this, which are thankfully very rare, are deeply disturbing and upsetting."
Tamara Camara, whose child attends the school and whose niece had Reshef as a teacher, was shocked when she received the principal’s email.
“Absolute disgust. This is a person who carries a protective role in our children's lives and here he is walking the halls with vulnerable youth,” Camara said.
She is outraged that parents weren’t informed about the investigation sooner.
“This is something that should’ve been addressed. The legality isn’t for us to figure out but it’s for our children’s safety,” Camara said.
Klassen said the school district wasn't previously permitted to share details with parents until charges were announced.
Reshef is charged with two counts of making or publishing child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography.
The alleged offences took place on three separate dates last year: June 23, and July 4 and 11.
Anyone who has information that could help with the investigation is asked to contact Surrey RCMP at 604-599-0502.