Local teacher allegedly requested nude photos from student

Local teacher allegedly requested nude photos from student

UPDATE: 1/28/16 – 11:19 A.M.

YUMA, Ariz. – The Yuma Police Department said the junior high school teacher arrested Wednesday on sexual exploitation charges allegedly requested nude photos from a former student. YPD said the student alleged 47-year-old Christopher Knoles solicited nude photos from her via social media in December 2015. With the cooperation of Yuma School District 1, the Yuma Police Department conducted an investigation which led to Knoles’ arrest.  He was booked into the Yuma County Detention Center Wednesday.

The Yuma Police Department encourages anyone with any information about this case or if you believe you may be a victim, to please call Detective Saenz at (928) 373-5000 #6079, the Yuma Police Department at (928) 373-4700 or 78-Crime at (928) 782-7463 to remain anonymous.

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YUMA, Ariz. – A teacher at Gila Vista Junior High School was arrested Wednesday afternoon and is facing one charge of attempted sexual exploitation.

Christopher Knoles, an eighth grade science teacher, appeared in court shortly after his arrest. The 47-year-old is being held on a $50,000 bond, according to Yuma County Justice Court officials.

Yuma Police Department (YPD) officers say they worked with Yuma School District 1 in a lengthy investigation leading to Knoles’ arrest. It is not known what kind of relationship Knoles had with the minor, including whether the minor was one of his students. Officers did not specify when the alleged exploitation took place.

Yuma Elementary School District 1, Superintendent Dr. Darwin Stiffler, issued the following statement after Knoles’ arrest.

“Yuma School District One is deeply committed to providing students with a safe and secure learning environment. On January 27, 2016, the District was notified that a teacher from Gila Vista Junior High School was arrested for allegations attempted sexual exploitation of a minor. The allegations do not involve any current District One students.  Upon notice, the District immediately placed the teacher on administrative leave.  We want to assure all our community members that the District is fully cooperating with the law enforcement investigation and will take appropriate responsive action.”

Knoles is scheduled to appear in court Friday at 1 p.m.

About The Author

Eduardo Santiago joined the FOX 9 and ABC 5 news team in February, 2012. That’s the same year KECY launched its very first local newscast. He has been covering local news in Yuma and the Imperial Valley since his start as a KYMA photojournalist in 2006. During his decade in broadcasting, Eduardo has covered some of the biggest stories in the Desert Southwest – from President Bush’s visit to Yuma, Ariz. to the uncovering of drug tunnels that span the US-Mexico border. One of the most memorable stories Eduardo covered was the 2010 Easter Earthquake that rocked the Imperial Valley, Mexicali, and Yuma. Eduardo, along with his news team, won an award from the Associated Press for best coverage of an ongoing story following the quake. Before he made his move to TV, Eduardo was just a kid born in East Los Angeles, where he spent his early childhood. His parents moved him to Mexicali, B.C. Mexico, where he did most of his elementary school education. He finally landed in El Centro, where he graduated from Central Union High School in 2005. Eduardo is currently a student at Imperial Valley College. You can find Eduardo hanging out in the Imperial Valley and Yuma with his family on any given weekend. His off-screen passion is playing guitar and sports.

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