Substitute teacher spared sentencing for porn pop-ups

Although it's hard to conjure up a simple explanation for why a substitute teacher would show middle-school students porn pop-ups on purpose, Julie Amero was prosecuted on the ground that she had done this intentionally. She was eventually found guilty and faced the prospect of 40 years in jail because of the incident. A defense witness, who analyzed the computer but was unable to present all of his findings in court, called the case "one of the most frustrating experiences of my career, knowing full well that the person is innocent and not being allowed to provide logical proof." The computer in question was sent to a Connecticut state laboratory after the original trial finished, and the judge announced today that the lab findings may contradict those presented by the prosecution's computer expert at trial. Amero's lawyers asked for and received a new trial, and the request was not opposed by the prosecution. A date has yet to be set.

While substituting for an English class, Amero went to the restroom and returned to find students gathered around a computer that was displaying porn pop-ups. Amero, who describes herself as a total computer novice, couldn't make them stop, and she eventually ran to the teacher's lounge to get help. In court, school officials admitted that the antivirus software installed on the PC was out of date and antispyware programs were not installed. A school official did tell parents, however, that the school district had comprehensive filtering and firewall software in place at the time.

News source: Ars Technica

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@turke ................ Now who the hell said that Stone Age is long gone?

I read the other day that modern man still carries something like 93% of Neanderthal Man's Genes!

Total bull****. Nothing else. All children today, even in very religious countries already know enough about sex, porn and stuff. So what ? Yes, there is this porn industry, and if it is bad why they don't stop it. Ah, i know. Cause it makes big money. Just like cigarette. Sell it, but don't forget to write "it is harmful". And you are justified. Now who the hell said that Stone Age is long gone ?

Just a thought for all who keep saying things about the American justice system being screwed up... just imagine what would have happened to her if this had happened in a Muslim country? She might get off with just a simple stoning, no, second thought, burning since she had the temerity to be a woman teaching thier kids in the first place.

Oserus said,
Just a thought for all who keep saying things about the American justice system being screwed up... just imagine what would have happened to her if this had happened in a Muslim country? She might get off with just a simple stoning, no, second thought, burning since she had the temerity to be a woman teaching thier kids in the first place.

aye, everyone loves the generous and forgiving muslems though.

twistedddx said,
Good old America. The legal system is as dumb as the people that live there.

Yeah, dumb enough to send what ever **** hole country you live in money or aid. What has your country done for the rest of the world in it's history? Let me take a shot in the dark here..... NOTHING.

+3

RAID 0 said,

Yeah, dumb enough to send what ever **** hole country you live in money or aid. What has your country done for the rest of the world in it's history? Let me take a shot in the dark here..... NOTHING.

My country founded and populated America. Oh wait... that was a HUGE mistake!!! Now the rest of the world has to put up with a huge number of patriotic retards who live in the southern states that have no clue about the outside world, with their racist, homophobic, discriminatory backward fundamentalist views and the inability to accept other people's contrasting views. RAID 0 is clearly one of them. I sincerely apologise to the rest of this world for this grave error of judgement.

Llamaman said,
+3

My country founded and populated America. Oh wait... that was a HUGE mistake!!! Now the rest of the world has to put up with a huge number of patriotic retards who live in the southern states that have no clue about the outside world, with their racist, homophobic, discriminatory backward fundamentalist views and the inability to accept other people's contrasting views. RAID 0 is clearly one of them. I sincerely apologise to the rest of this world for this grave error of judgement.

Oh, Mr. Personal Attack? I'm actually in California. Not the south. You know nothing of me. I do however know the UK was getting the **** kicked out of them in wait for it.. wait... Both world wars. Oh well. How straight and clean are your teeth? Go DIAF, ******. (hehe, I said ******)

Let's assume she is 100% innocent. Her life/career are STILL ruined over this. This case should have never made it to court. Especially since there is no history of prior criminal activities.

TexasFlood said,
I could go next door and slay my nextdoor neighbour and get less than 40 years in Jail...

It's almost getting annoying that people cant seem to comprehend it's not 40 years... its 20 counts at a max 2 years each that would run CONCURRENT! which means the lady would get a max 2 years... but on the books its 40 years total "served for 20 counts" which 2yrs x 20 counts running concurrent is ta da... 40yrs total time

neufuse said,

It's almost getting annoying that people cant seem to comprehend it's not 40 years... its 20 counts at a max 2 years each that would run CONCURRENT! which means the lady would get a max 2 years... but on the books its 40 years total "served for 20 counts" which 2yrs x 20 counts running concurrent is ta da... 40yrs total time

What people don't get is the fact that she shouldn't get 40, 20, or even 2 years for this non-crime. Maybe her punishment should be sitting through Internet security classes.

Hexicon said,
What people don't get is the fact that she shouldn't get 40, 20, or even 2 years for this non-crime. Maybe her punishment should be sitting through Internet security classes.

Agree. Porn is not a crime. For action to be labelled as crime there must be one side which suffered REAL damage. If all sides were involved by own will then there is no crime. It is crime only from perspective of religious zealots who still live in the middle ages.

neufuse said,

It's almost getting annoying that people cant seem to comprehend it's not 40 years... its 20 counts at a max 2 years each that would run CONCURRENT! which means the lady would get a max 2 years... but on the books its 40 years total "served for 20 counts" which 2yrs x 20 counts running concurrent is ta da... 40yrs total time

It's almost getting VERY annoying that people cant seems to comprehend it IS 40 years... whether it is CONCURRENT OR NOT.

Richteralan said,

It's almost getting VERY annoying that people cant seems to comprehend it IS 40 years... whether it is CONCURRENT OR NOT.

40 years isn't 40 years in a persons live therefore it isn't 40yrs of her life gone like people are implying

Here at the library we have a filter(only used for the kids and teen rooms adult comps are unfiltered, plus we are flexible if a parent asks for their child to use youtube we let them but it has to be the parent who asks), wsus,windows defender, antivirus that automatically updates and deep freeze and Group policy.

We have none of those problems. All schools should be setup this way. Heck the computers update themselves and leaves us time for more important things.

Schools should really invest in these if they haven't already...

1) Squidguard (Proxy)
2) XP (w/ updates with whatever msft calls SUS now)
3) Anti-virus/Spyware removal tools (auto-update in the middle of the night with WOL)

Judge : You did what!!! You showed kiddies PORN!!!!

Amero : It wasn't intentional your lordship honor person. They just flashed on screen.

Judge : I'll give you flashing you twisted F**K. Desecrating our poor kiddies minds with abhorrent filth. I sentence you to Life. LIFE I said! And the electric chair. And I'll have your brain poached. Burn witch, BURN.


Lawyer : Next case, Jimmy 'Killer' Jimbob for 10 counts of murder.

Judge : Ahhh, this is hideously wrong, the guy was only protecting himself. You can go home. BTW, want to have a coffee, my treat.

Isn't it some kind of contradiction, first it says she did it on purpose, but then it says she didn't.

She was prosecuted on the grounds that she did it on purpose - I doubt that she said that she did it on purpose, and the article states that it's hard to conjure up a simple explanation as to why that would be (pointing out the ridiculousness of it all).

The ones that have to be punished are the members of the school IT department for allowing that kind of traffic on the Scholl premises...

So someone murders and they get 25 years.

Someone falls victim to 40 years because the human body was shown on a computer in a sexual way? Christ, what a world we live in today. I love how "OMFG" people get over swearing on TV, violence in games, and sex in general. It's everyday life in the 21st century, whether you see it at age 5, 10, 15, 20, you are going to see it. Get over it.

And Sinz, you're a ****ing idiot and you clearly know nothing of malicious programming. You have obviously never heard of spam e-mails, "porn bombs" which are malicious in nature and cause essentially a "bomb" of porn to pop up on your computer, viruses will cause this as well, so will a lot of other things. Porn showing up a computer isn't localized to "those who view porn". You really are a complete moron.

In any event, the justice system needs a reboot.

I'm just shocked that someone hasn't played the "...he's a terrorist..." angle yet.

This guy should be facing some time here. Hell, if Paris, Martha can go to jail (even though they were locked up in a hotel style jail) this dude should be sent to the slammer and play bitch to bubba in there. Regardless of if he showed the kids porn or not and the whole "they were just pop ups", porn ads only come up if you're looking at porn. Trust me I know.

On topic though here peoples. Porn ads just don't happen out of the blue. This guy should be locked up somewhere.

1. yes they do, especially if you have spyware, trojans, or viruses, or no pop-up blockers.
2. It's a ****ing woman, not a man.
3. I'd say something else here but knowing Neowin, it would have been censored (completely removed like some of my posts)

yert* said,
1. yes they do, especially if you have spyware, trojans, or viruses, or no pop-up blockers.
2. It's a ****ing woman, not a man.
3. I'd say something else here but knowing Neowin, it would have been censored (completely removed like some of my posts)

4. According to the defences claims at least it was the children that were accessing the computer at the time the porn began to appear

Sinz said,
I'm just shocked that someone hasn't played the "...he's a terrorist..." angle yet.

This guy should be facing some time here. Hell, if Paris, Martha can go to jail (even though they were locked up in a hotel style jail) this dude should be sent to the slammer and play bitch to bubba in there. Regardless of if he showed the kids porn or not and the whole "they were just pop ups", porn ads only come up if you're looking at porn. Trust me I know.

On topic though here peoples. Porn ads just don't happen out of the blue. This guy should be locked up somewhere.

you think your so smart dont you? guess what porn ad's at one point showed up on neowin! they show up on ANY ad provider that doesnt block them, I remember neowin scrambling to block those ad's when they started to pop up... its not just porn sites...

well truth is, if you are caught with a pound of weed you get a longer sentence than if you molest a child. Seems kinda wrong to me... This is just kinda on the same line of thinking.

do something to a child here you get 15-25 years... get caught with drugs, first offence is a max 3... I don't see how your point works?

So what exactly are you trying to prove? You have been misinformed and your facts are incorrect. Also, how is it related to this article?

DJ Specs said,
American justice.. pathetic!

its not pathetic, whast pathetic is the people that don't understand all the case facts then write stories that blow stuff out of proportion like the length of the sentance... its 20 counts at 2 years max each to run CONCURRENT! thats 2 years max in prision...

No, it is pathetic. Our court system is seriously ****ed up. What sucks even more about it is that it's a lot better than most.

The U.S. legal and justice system is very screwed. People that kill people get more time than what she will/could be facing.

that'd of been 40 years CONCURRENT! that means she'd do about 1-2 years at most... beacuse corruption of a minor is 1-2yrs and if there were 20 students thats 20 counts that would run concurrent...

when you guys see 40yrs you need to read into it, some people get 200 years but do it concurrently... and get out in 10

neufuse said,
that'd of been 40 years CONCURRENT! that means she'd do about 1-2 years at most... beacuse corruption of a minor is 1-2yrs and if there were 20 students thats 20 counts that would run concurrent...

when you guys see 40yrs you need to read into it, some people get 200 years but do it concurrently... and get out in 10

Where do you see that it is concurrent?

The prosecutors expert should be never allowed to testify again... moron

Hopefully this case ends well for the substitute teacher

it's called US where things are not linear and often don't make sense at all. maybe we really have to devide the 40yrs by a factor of 2.54 to get the real number. whoever came up with 40yrs needs to be fired.

I sympathies with the teacher here. 40 years for something which is not her fault is unimaginable.
I would definitely like to know what this prosecution's computer "expert" found.

Wow. I can't believe she had the chance of going to jail for 40 years. Her life spent in prison all because of a pornographic advertisement? Ridiculous, utterly ridiculous. People that have killed other people get 5-25 years in prison.

I think one of the parents (of the students watching the pop-ups) over reacted and told a different side of the story. If I was in 5th grade and I was caught watching porn, I'd sure as hell tell my parents (if they found out) it wasn't my fault. And to add to that, school computers really need pop-up blockers.

RTFA!

Amero's lawyers asked for and received a new trial, and the request was not opposed by the prosecution. A date has yet to be set.

She didn't "get off" (no pun intended, but still funny), she got a new trial to potentially overturn this guilty sentence. I feel sorry for her. She should not have to go through this nonsense.

Yeah I agree, its really REALLY effed up. I can kill someone and get a couple years in jail, but if I dare be a teacher and unintentionally allow porn to be seen by my students it suddenly bumps up to 40

this is insane... this person should NEVER see any jail time over this as im sure it was not her fault.

they just need better admins etc to look after the pc's ... ill bet somehow it got infected with pron popups somehow.

"students gathered around the computers" ... i wonder why. lol.

but if there all teenagers i aint saying it's right but it aint the end of the world... i think it would be far worse if some 7-8year old seen it vs 15-16 year olds (i dont know how they where cause i did not read article yet)

bottom line she was a novice pc user who knows nothing about that sorta stuff so she should not be held liable!.

rm20010 said,
40 years in prison if she was found guilty? FFS, thieves and murders get off for less than that these days.

That's the U.S. "justice" system for ya.

well, anti virus, anti spam, firewalls and "filtering" (which is a very broad term) do nothing for popups.

however, a google toolbar would stop popups.


however, it was most likly a virus or spyware that was forcing the popups.

you could go proxy sever, but thats just a pain in everyones arse.

I work for a school district. In Texas, it's law that we have to filter Internet traffic.

You are correct, filtering software doesn't block popups, but the popups are a very small portion of this problem. Filtering should have blocked the content, thus eliminating the porn issue... the source of the charges.

Its not really her fault if the kids are looking up porn and the schools crappy systems dont filter the stuff out

They were probably those random popups... anyway, I would never discard the kids looking for porn, lol. If they were around 12 ... !