Former Cold Lake teacher charged after allegedly filming students in change rooms

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ALERT investigation followed allegations 34-year-old had filmed a Cold Lake, Alta., student changing their clothing in a school change room.  (CBC - image credit)
ALERT investigation followed allegations 34-year-old had filmed a Cold Lake, Alta., student changing their clothing in a school change room. (CBC - image credit)

A former teacher from Cold Lake, Alta., is facing multiple charges related to voyeurism and child pornography after allegedly filming students using the school's change rooms.

Ten individuals have been identified as potential victims in incidents that date back to 2013.

James Neil Morrison, a former teacher at Assumption Junior / Senior High School, was charged on April 20 with voyeurism, making child pornography, theft of electronic data and possession of child pornography, according to a news release from Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT).

The 34-year-old was first arrested one year ago, in April 2021, after it was alleged he had surreptitiously recorded a student changing their clothing inside a school change room.

A statement issued Wednesday by the Lakeland Catholic School Division said Morrison was immediately removed from the school, banned from entering the school's premises and told not to contact staff or students.

He has not returned to the school since and is no longer employed by the division, the statement added.

ALERT's Internet Child Exploitation (ICE) unit took over the investigation from local RCMP last November.

ALERT said the unit uncovered additional offences after an analysis of Morrison's computer and electronic devices. Ten student victims were identified by ICE as having been secretly filmed in offences dating back to 2013.

"Undoubtedly this is a traumatic experience for the students, their families, and the school. These offences date back a number of years and came as a shock to many of the victims," said Sgt. Kerry Shima, an investigator with the ICE unit.

The investigation is ongoing and anyone with information is asked to contact Cold Lake RCMP or Crime Stoppers.

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