PHOENIX, AZ - A Glendale teacher has been arrested after police say he posed as a minor on Facebook asking a young boy for sex.
Police said John Todorich, 55, a teacher at an Arroyo Elementary School, created the online profile in 2011.
The profile stated he was a 16-year-old male living in Phoenix and used a picture of a minor as his identity.
Todorich started having online conversations with a minor who he later solicited for sex. A mother tipped off investigators after seeing private messages on her son's Facebook page.
In a September 7th interview, Todorich admitted to police he created the profile, but claimed he didn't know the boy was a minor.
"I thought it was strange cause he seems like a nice guy then this happened. It's kinda weird," said student Anthony Ramirez.
"I have always taught my kids you can't trust anyone," said his mother Sabrina. "I hope it didn't go any further with students at this school."
Court paperwork shows Todorich was accused of fondling a student while working as a P.E. teacher at Arroyo in 2010. No charges were filed because no witnesses came forward.
Todorich was arraigned Wednesday in Maricopa County Superior Court. He was arrested Friday on suspicion of child molestation and luring a minor for sexual exploitation.
Arroyo Elementary School sent the following letter to parents on Tuesday:
This letter is to inform you of a situation that involves a teacher. On Friday evening, September 7, 2012, we became aware that John Todorich, physical education teacher, was arrested for allegedly luring a minor by use of the Internet. We had received information on Thursday, September 6 that he was being investigated. The teacher was placed on administrative leave early Friday morning, pending the investigation, and he was subsequently arrested at home on Friday.
Mr. Todorich has been a teacher in our District since 2005. At the time he was hired and again in 2011, he received fingerprint and background clearance from the Arizona Department of Public Safety.
WESD will cooperate fully with the investigation. This is a law enforcement issue and, more than likely, we will not be privy to the details. We must allow the investigators to do their jobs and allow due process to occur.
A substitute teacher has been hired to cover Mr. Todorich's classes. As always, the education, welfare and safety of our students is our main priority. These situations are extremely unfortunate for everyone, but we must continue to be focused on teaching our students and let law enforcement do their jobs.