Florida Teacher Sent Several Nude Images to Students; Pleaded Guilty to Several Charges involving Molestation of Juveniles

A former teacher from Cape Coral who was arrested twice and accused of sending inappropriate pictures to a student changed his plea during a trial call on Thursday. A year ago, he said he wasn’t guilty.

In one of the two cases he was charged with, 31-year-old Joseph Reynolds pleaded guilty to having relations with a child, sending harmful material to a minor, and computerized solicitation of a minor. In a different case, the state dropped the only charge on March 28.

Reynolds taught at Diplomat Middle School. He was arrested on April 7, 2023, for sending sexually explicit material to a child. This was after the Cape Coral Police Department’s Special Victims Unit found that he had sent a student a picture of his private parts.

Two days after being freed on bond, he was jailed again. He was freed on a $120,000 bond on April 26, 2023, after his second arrest.

Before his arraignment in May of last year, the state dropped one count of failing to report suspected child abuse and thought there wasn’t enough proof for one count of selling, lending, transmitting, or having obscenity.

Reynolds’ next court date is June 17, when Lee Circuit Judge Margaret Steinbeck will hand down her sentence.

“We hold our teachers to high expectations and do not tolerate the alleged behavior,” a representative for the Lee County School District said in a statement.

Reynolds was “immediately removed” from the classroom when the claim was made, Spicker said. Reynolds never came back and is no longer working for the school district, Spicker said.

The school district told the Florida Department of Education, the Department of Children and Families, and the police about the claims.

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