Volunteer coach faces child porn charges

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WESTFIELD – A volunteer high school wrestling coach now faces charges of distributing child porn.

A tip was submitted to a tip line maintained by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children in January, around the same time Christopher Rennard, 28, was a volunteer wrestling coach at Westfield High School.

Federal agents and local authorities raided Rennard’s home on April 17.

The superintendent of Westfield Washington Schools tells FOX59 this was Rennard’s first year as a volunteer coach. According to the district, he was not a paid staff member, and he did pass a background check.

The school district said they are working with federal investigators, and as far as they can tell no Westfield students were involved.

“I was sitting right here in this chair,” said Jerry McKinley, a neighbor.

He remembers the day federal agents swarmed upon his neighborhood. He said he witnessed the raid at his neighbor Christopher Rennard’s house.

“Their guns drawn, and they went to this corner house two houses down,” he said. “I (saw) them heading toward that house, and I thought what the heck. I knew something serious had to have happened.”

It was serious. McKinley said the stakeout lasted four hours.

Court documents show the day of the raid, April 17, Rennard admitted to trading child porn online through Dropbox, so other users could copy the images and download.

He also told investigators he used an iPhone app called Omegle to find others who wanted to see the porn and even logged on Skype to have cybersex with kids as young as thirteen years old.

Rennard had just finished up his first season as a volunteer wrestling coach at Westfield High School, where he graduated.

“The school system will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement authorities during their investigation. In the initial investigation, the law enforcement authorities were clear that there is currently no indication of victimization of any Westfield High School students,” according to a statement released from the district.

It’s a serious situation that rocked Jerry McKinley’s quiet street, one he and other neighbors won’t forget.

“It’s disgusting. It’s disgusting you know, it’s shocking really,” said McKinley, “We all gathered in the lot next door and just kept watching, figuring out what the heck’s going on.”

We stopped by Rennard’s home on Wednesday, and nobody answered the door.

He faces four federal counts, including possession and distribution of child porn. A federal judge ordered Rennard released until his next court appearance. A date for that hasn’t been set.