Teacher arrested for not reporting child sexual abuse crimes

Reporter: Morgan Rynor
Published: Updated:
Mugshot of Stacey Gridley. (Credit: Lee County Sheriff's Office)
Mugshot of Stacey Gridley. (Credit: Lee County Sheriff’s Office)

A teacher, someone who is supposed to protect kids, is accused of not reporting a child’s sexual abuse. Investigators arrested Stacey Gridley, after her husband Matthew was arrested on child porn, molestation and sexual battery charges.

They were both big parts of the Boy Scouts, too. On Tuesday evening, we are learning they were stripped of their duties with the organization.

The arrests come a the end of a four-month-long investigation: Operation Safe Summer. More than a dozen people were arrested, but a Florida Department of Law Enforcement agent said this is the first case he has had where a husband and wife were arrested.

Deputies found hundreds of files of child porn on Matthew’s computer. His wife, Stacey, was a teacher at Varsity Lakes Middle School. The School District of Lee County said she had been an employee since 2012. But they removed her from the classroom as soon as her husband was arrested.

Detectives said Stacey knew about the allegations against her husband, but chose not to report him. The couple, also well known for their involvement in Boy Scouts as treasurers, volunteers and pack leaders, are now being stripped of their titles.

Greg Graham, scout executive with Southwest Florida Council of the Boy Scouts of America, told WINK News:

“Both of these individuals were immediately removed from all Scout Programs by the Southwest Florida Council and by the unit’s Charter Sponsor Partner as soon as the law enforcement charges were brought to their attention.”

FDLE and other local law enforcement agencies are using this incident to stress the importance of knowing what your kids are up to this summer. These were boy scout leaders, teachers – people you can typically rely on and trust.

Locals said the two betrayed the trust of all children and parents in Lehigh Acres.

“Parents drop them off at school thinking, ‘okay, my kid is going to get an education, they’re going to be safe,'” Shawn Edwards said. “But to find out that they’ve been taking advantage of that type of situation and keeping it locked up for I don’t know how long, months, years, it’s just, it’s really sickening.”

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