Updated 11 a.m. Saturday: Federal agents have arrested and charged Chevy Chase resident Jonathan Oldale with production of child pornography, according to a message sent Friday night by Superintendent Jack Smith to the Montgomery County Public Schools community.
“While the charges are connected to Mr. Oldale’s private residence, they involve dozens of school-aged children, many of whom attend MCPS schools,” Smith wrote. “It is alleged that Mr. Oldale videotaped children during parties that he hosted at his home.”
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland, law enforcement agents found hundreds of videos filmed in the bathroom of his home. The videos allegedly depicted at least 30 children taking off their clothes or bathing suits, taking showers and getting dressed. The videos also show Oldale checking camera angles for the multiple cameras in the bathroom.
According to the investigation by county police and FBI agents, Oldale made children who attended “splash parties” in his yard take showers before they went home.
Oldale, of Greystone Court, had been out on bond since he was arrested and charged in October by Montgomery County police with conducting visual surveillance of another person in a private place without consent. Oldale, 54 at the time, was accused of placing a camera in a unisex bathroom at a Silver Spring gymnastics center for kids.
According to police, Oldale allegedly left a backpack containing a recording camera in the bathroom of Silver Star Gymnastics and Fitness Club in May. His children were enrolled in classes there, police said.
After searching his computer at that time, police found videos of children urinating in bathrooms, but said they believe he downloaded them and did not record them. At that time, detectives said they had not located any videos of people being recorded in the Silver Spring gymnastics studio.
According to the complaint filed by the U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland Robert K. Hur, a second search warrant executed at Oldale’s home in July 2017 resulted in the seizure of cameras containing SD memory cards from Oldale’s office. An examination of the SD cards revealed the videos he had filmed in the bathroom in his home.
After being notified about Oldale’s arrest in October, “MCPS immediately conducted a search of the schools where Mr. Oldale had students enrolled,” Smith wrote. “No cameras or surveillance devices were found. Additionally, we issued a no trespass order banning Mr. Oldale from all MCPS property.”
In November, outraged parents blasted police, angrily questioning why Oldale was able to have “constant” access to children for months after the camera had been found in the Silver Spring gym.
“I am outraged by this behavior and I know that our community finds the allegations in the charging documents as disturbing and upsetting as I do,” he wrote. “Our thoughts are with the victims and their families.”
Smith said Student Services staff will be available to provide counseling and support to students and families as needed.
He advised anyone with questions or information that may be helpful to the investigation of Oldale to contact the FBI at 410-265-8080.