Sought in child porn, ex-head of Delaware prep school is missing

Reuters

By Dave Warner

PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - Law enforcement officials were hunting on Friday for the former headmaster of an elite college prep school in Delaware who vanished after being charged with dealing in child pornography.

Christopher Wheeler, 53, who stepped down last week from the helm of the Tower Hill School in Wilmington, disappeared after authorities raided his campus home and office on October 22 and found at least 25 pornographic images, said Jason Miller, spokesman for the Delaware Attorney General's Office. He was charged with 25 counts of dealing in child pornography.

One of the nation's top private day schools, Tower Hill currently has an enrollment of 747 students - from daycare through grade 12. The DuPont family helped to found the school in 1919 and its graduates have included several members of Congress.

Miller declined to comment on whether any Tower Hill student was involved in the child pornography matter.

The attorney general's office and the Wilmington Police Department are looking for Wheeler, an unmarried father of an adopted child, who became headmaster in 2005.

The attorney general's Child Predator Task Force searched Wheeler computers shortly after he returned from a business trip, and he has not been seen since, said Nancy Schuckert, spokeswoman for the school.

The task force used a search warrant issued after an allegation of misconduct, said Miller, who declined to elaborate.

The pornographic images were found on his home computer, said Miller, who did not disclose the number of images uncovered.

"There were 25 charges filed that are representative of the kinds of images that were located on his computer," Miller said.

(Editing by Barbara Goldberg and Gunna Dickson)

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