Teacher found dead after police launch child pornography investigation
A performing arts teacher who also worked on the Gateway Clipper cruise was found dead in his Crafton home on Monday.
Police said 47-year-old Shaun Rolly was under investigation for alleged sexual abuse of children. Police said Rolly was in possession of thousands of images of child pornography.
Rolly was a teacher for the last decade at the Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School in Midland, Beaver County.
Crafton police started the investigation on Saturday after obtaining two CDs that allegedly belonged to Rolly and were filled with pornographic images of children 10 to 12 years old.
Allegheny County police investigators then executed a search warrant at Rolly's home on Johnston Street and, according to court documents, found 13 more CDs next to his bed.
On Monday, police were called back to Rolly's home and confirmed he had committed suicide. Charges had not been filed at the time of his death.
Rolly was around children frequently. In addition to teaching, he also worked as "Tristan the Pirate" on the Gateway Clipper Fleet and was involved with performing arts organizations around the region. Online tributes poured in when news broke that Rolly had been found dead in his home.
"A lot of the kids just loved to hang out with him and have him as a teacher. He was very loved and respected," said Jessica Taormina, a former Lincoln Park student. She said she was not aware that Rolly was under investigation for alleged child sex abuse and said, "It would have never crossed my mind."
School officials said a letter went home to parents about Rolly's death, but they did not comment on the allegations. Calls to the Gateway Clipper were not returned as of Tuesday evening.