Prosecutors in California have accused a music teacher of filming himself ejaculating into flutes and photographing five elementary school girls using the contaminated instruments.
Citing a grand jury transcript, the Orange County Register reported that the alleged lewd acts committed by Flutes Across the World founder John Edward Zeretzke, 60, occurred in 2017 and involved two Orange County girls and three girls in Los Angeles County, all who were younger than 14. In March, a grand jury indicted Zeretzke, who faces state and federal charges stemming from numerous allegations involving children.
Deputy Attorney General Amanda Casillas told the grand jury that Zeretzke was either at home or in a hotel room located near schools when he filmed himself ejaculating into and onto the flutes. He then took photos of the children using the instrument, she said.
According to the news outlet, Casillas alleged Zeretzke sent photos of the victims using the tainted flutes to someone in online chats—where he also described the sexual gratification he felt when seeing it occur.
A spokesperson for the Newport-Mesa Unified School District told the Orange County Register that they became aware of the allegations in October 2017 and immediately contacted police. Authorities reportedly seized and tested the flutes shortly thereafter but they had no traces of semen.
Citing an earlier indictment, The Register reported that Zeretzke was accused of forcing a girl to produce child pornography, attempted to make someone to send him sexually-graphic images, obtained child pornography via the internet, and went to the Philippines to have sex with minors.
Casillas claimed Zeretzke was also accused of rubbing a child’s shoulders in class, caressing her back, and telling her she was pretty.
The former music teacher founded Flutes Across the World, an organization which allowed thousands of children all over the country to decorate flutes. Children in the program keep one of the flutes and the other is sent a child in another country.
Zeretzke has pleaded not guilty to all federal and state charges and remains jailed. A pretrial conference is scheduled for August 14.
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[Featured image: John Zeretzke/KEYT video screengrab]