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[December 11, 2012]
Former coach at Lutheran North gets 12+ years for child pornography
ST. LOUIS, Dec 11, 2012 (St. Louis Post-Dispatch - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- A former tennis coach at Lutheran North High School and occasional substitute teacher in the Parkway School District was sentenced Tuesday to more than 12 years in prison on two federal child pornography charges.
Richard "Dick" Ambler, 50, of Florissant, pleaded guilty to receipt and transportation of child pornography in September and admitted possessing thousands of images of child porn and hundreds of videos on his laptop and a hard drive, court documents show.
Ambler made the pictures and videos available online and attracted the attention of law enforcement. He later admitted to FBI agents that he'd swapped nude pictures with people that he met on Craigslist who purported to be underage boys, court documents show.
In court Tuesday, Ambler apologized to the unknown children in the pictures, saying he could not begin to address "all the physical and mental anguish they suffered." He also apologized to relatives. Ambler has a wife and five children.
In sentencing Ambler to 151 months in prison and lifetime of supervised release, U.S. District Judge Catherine Perry cited the large number of images of child porn and "troublesome" signs that Ambler was heading "in the direction" of becoming a molester.
Luthern North officials were not immediately available for comment. At the time of Ambler's indictment in federal court here in May, Parkway District spokesman Paul Tandy said that the district removed Ambler from its substitute list after learning of the investigation.
Ambler, he said, worked off and on as a substitute in middle and high schools since the 2009-2010 school year. He passed a full background check and was not the subject of any complaints, Tandy said.
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