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Elementary school YMCA worker resigns ahead of child porn charges

CLEARWATER — A Sunset Hills Elementary youth specialist has resigned from the YMCA of the Suncoast after police discovered several pornographic videos featuring children younger than 12 on his personal laptop computer, authorities said.

The Clearwater Police Department's Crimes Against Children and Families Unit received a tip from a computer repair company about a laptop they received that appeared to contain numerous child pornography videos, spokeswoman Elizabeth Watts said.

The laptop belonged to Paul J. Decaporale, who facilitated games for Sunset Hills' before- and after-school YMCA program for the past two years, Watts said.

The computer was seized, and a forensic exam revealed a number of videos on the hard drive, Watts said.

Decaporale, 22, of Clearwater was arrested Friday on six counts of child pornography, jail records show. Before that, "he just came to us and said he needed to resign immediately," said Mandy Griffith, spokeswoman for the YMCA of the Suncoast.

"YMCA conducts safeguards. He had no previous record. He was a good employee."

Pinellas County schools spokeswoman Andrea Zahn said the situation does not require further review because Decaporale was not an employee of the district.

"His arrest has no direct affiliation with his employment at this YMCA site and no parent concerns have been reported to the site-based coordinator or to the school principal," she said. "Should the situation require additional review, it would be handled by the YMCA."

Decaporale was in custody in the Pinellas County Jail with bail set at $30,000.

Elementary school YMCA worker resigns ahead of child porn charges 05/24/10 [Last modified: Monday, May 24, 2010 10:24pm]
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