WDRB [Louisville KY]
February 2, 2024
A Louisville Catholic school teacher is charged with distributing images of child pornography that federal investigators said included photoshopped images of faces taken from the school’s yearbook.
According to a news release from the United States Department of Justice, when he was a seventh and eighth grade religion teacher at St. Stephen Martyr Catholic School, 39-year-old Jordan Fautz sent out child sexual abuse materials to a law enforcement officer who was working undercover online.
Court documents say Fautz used yearbook photos of students and at least one adult from the school. The distributed images had photoshopped faces of students and the adult onto other nude images.
The incidents took place between March 2022 and January 2024.
“Please keep our parish and school in your prayers as we deal with this very distressing situation,” St. Stephen Martyr Pastor Rev. Peter Bucalo said in a statement on the school’s website.
The FBI said a folder sent by Fautz to an undercover agent contained 115 images of “mostly teenage girls, labeled with what appears to be their real names,” the FBI said.
“This folder contained non-pornographic images … that appear to have been taken at St. Stephen Martyr Catholic School and Church,” court documents say.
Some photos showed students wearing “clearly labeled red shirts” with the letters “SSM and in front of a “SSMCardinals” photo backdrop, investigators said.
FBI investigators also found that Fautz used the school’s computer system for some of what he’s charged with.
In a written statement, the Archdiocese of Louisville said it was made aware of Fautz’s arrest Friday and he will not return to St. Stephen Martyr, where he served as a part-time religion teacher and member of the maintenance staff for nine years. The FBI and archdiocesan representatives will hold a meeting with St. Stephen Martyr parents at 1 p.m. Saturday.
“The Archdiocese and the parish are fully cooperating with the investigation,” the archdiocese said in a statement Friday.
Fautz will be scheduled to make an initial appearance before a U.S. Magistrate judge in the U.S. District Court. If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of five years and maximum penalty of 40 years in prison.
The FBI is investigating and the FBI Louisville Field Office is looking to identify potential victims in the case. To contact the FBI, email SSMtips@fbi.gov.