Authorities: Marana crossing guard caught with child porn - Tucson News Now

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Authorities: Marana crossing guard caught with child porn

Billy Cruz. (Source: Pima County Sheriff's Department) Billy Cruz. (Source: Pima County Sheriff's Department)
MARANA, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

A cross guarding working for the Marana Unified School District has been caught with child pornography, authorities said.

The Pima County Sheriff's Department said Billy Cruz, 60, was arrested on five counts of sexual exploitation of a minor.

According to the MUSD, Cruz has been working for the district since August 2012 and was a crossing guard at Thornydale Elementary at Tortolita Middle.

The charges against Cruz do not involve any Marana student or property, according to the PCSD and MUSD.

"The district takes this situation extremely seriously, and has taken immediate personnel action and placed Mr. Cruz on leave pending outcome of an investigation of his arrest," MUSD said in a news release. "Mr. Cruz went through all standard hiring processes including fingerprint and background check upon hire. Mr. Cruz has had no prior disciplinary issues while employed with the Marana district."

The PCSD said the investigation began when they received a tip from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children "regarding a report of disturbing images being uploaded from a Google account in Pima County."

Cruz was arrested Friday, Dec. 15, at his home in the 4100 block of West Avocado Street.

"Detectives uncovered files containing images consistent with sexual exploitation of a minor," the PCSD said in a news release.

Below is a copy of the letter sent to parents of students at Thornydale and Tortolita:
 

To Thornydale Elementary and Tortolita Middle School Parents/Guardians:

Because we value the importance of communicating with our parents, we are writing you regarding the arrest of Bill Cruz, the school crossing guard at Thornydale Elementary and Tortolita Middle.  The Pima County Sheriff’s Department informed our District that Mr. Cruz was arrested today for alleged Sexual Exploitation of a Minor.

We want to assure you that Mr. Cruz’s arrest does not involve any MUSD students or any property of MUSD.

Please know that we take this situation extremely seriously, and the Marana district has taken immediate personnel action and placed Mr. Cruz on leave. We recognize that you may have questions and may also feel a range of emotions surrounding this. However, due to confidentiality and personnel laws, we are limited in the information that may be publicly disclosed.

We want to take this opportunity to again thank you for your continued support of our students, staff, and outstanding schools.

Sincerely,

Zach Singer, Thornydale Principal

Rex Scott, Tortolita Middle Principal

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