MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Md. — A former Montgomery County Public School teacher was arrested in Buffalo, New York Monday for charges of enticing a minor and possession of child pornography.
According to a press release from the office of United States Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr., Western District of New York, Richard W. Scherer, 70, faces a possible minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron J. Mango said Scherer was arrested after the FBI received information about him from a citizens group called Predator Poacher. The group, which has a website and YouTube channel, uses several online accounts to pose as minors and chat with adults who later want to meet for alleged sexual contact, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of New York.
According to the attorney's office, a member of the group began talking with Scherer on Instagram while posing as a 13-year-old girl between April and June 2021. On June 27, the attorney's office says Scherer arranged to meet with the fictional teen. When he arrived, he was confronted by members of the Predator Poacher group.
The group claims Scherer also spoke with another member who was pretending to be an 8-year-old girl. The conversations allegedly because "graphic and sexual in nature," according to the attorney's office.
When investigators searched Scherer's phone, they found two images of child pornography.
Scherer worked in the Montgomery County Public School system for 25 years.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Western District of New York, citing a report from the school system, Scherer was investigated after a parent of a 4th-grade student complained to the assistant principal that Scherer may have been inappropriate with his students. The report stated the parent advised that her daughter and her daughter's friend often felt pressured to eat lunch with Scherer and that “he pulls her to him and hugs her, that he has patted her rear end and hips."
The attorney's office reported that the Superintendent of Montgomery County Public Schools sent a letter to the State of Maryland Superintendent of Schools in September 2011. The letter stated the Scherer "resigned after notice of allegations of misconduct involving a student. I recommend that Mr. Scherer’s certificate be revoked.”
Scherer's teaching certificate was subsequently revoked, according to the attorney's office.
WUSA9 has reached out to MCPS for comment.
If you have any information about Scherer, please call the FBI at 716-843-1680.
The three teens are aged, 17, 15, and 13, said D.C. Police.