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Many parents, students support music teacher charged with child porn

fisherOLYMPIA — Troy Fisher, a well-known music teacher and former theater director in Olympia, is facing trial for charges of possession of child porn. But this week, in a surprise ruling, a judge allowed Fisher to resume private music lessons with kids under adult supervision.

Fisher says he is innocent of the charges and that  he has no knowledge of child porn that was allegedly found on his home computer and on his work computer at Olympia’s Capital Playhouse. He vows to fight the charges.

“His position is that any child pornography that may be on his computer was completely inadvertently and unintentionally downloaded or ended up there, so he was never actively looking for child porn or looking at child pornography,” Fisher’s attorney, Paul Strophy, said.

Strophy is not the only one who believes in Fisher’s innocence. Dozens of parents and their children do, too.

“I am completely confident in Troy’s innocence. We are very blessed in this community to have him at the Playhouse and in ‘Kids in Koncert’ and in all of our lives,” parent Andrea DeShaye said.

Kids in Koncert, the Northwest’s premier youth choir, was founded in 1996 by Fisher and Capital Playhouse.

“As parents, we’re here supporting him because our kids want us to,” parent Suzy Scuderi said.

Scuderi has three children who have studied under Fisher. She is one of nearly 200 who stand behind Fisher — in the community and in court.

She and others are going so far as to sign affidavits asking the court to allow Fisher to resume private lessons with their children.

“My oldest, who has had the most experience with Troy, just said, ‘I don’t buy it.’ I don’t believe it,  I don’t buy it and I’m not saying I don’t believe it because in my subconscious I don’t want to. It doesn’t add up,” Scuderi said.

She added that parents are also relying on their instincts and gut feelings.

“None of us have any question in our hearts, any searching back over our minds, … that would make us feel differently or think any differently about Troy,” Scuderi said. “Anybody can be accused of something of that magnitude. It doesn’t mean that everyone has done something.”

Police first searched Fisher’s home computer last summer after his family reported him missing. Police said they were searching for clues on his home computer that might lead to his whereabouts. During the search, police said they found child pornography on his home computer and more on his work computer.

Fisher’s attorney said his home computer was searched without a warrant and he is asking the alleged evidence be thrown out.

A ruling is expected at the end of February.

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15 comments

  • Melissa Denton

    Troy Fisher is an amazingly talented and hard working teacher of singing. He teaches adults and kids and has many students who have achieved great things later in life due to his work. I am one of his adult students and am one of the hundreds of local citizens who support Troy. He has been wrongly accused and we all look forward to him getting his life back after these allegations are dismissed.

    • Sarah

      It does not matter how great he appears to be. There are many people that are well respected and like in their communities that have dirty secrets. It makes absolutely no sense at all to ignore the fact that the evidence was found on both his home and work computers. People who support him should stop looking for the best in people who show some of the worst behavior, namely having multiple incidences of the same crime. It is an outrage that people would defend a sicko because he appears to be such a great child mentor. It is highly unlikely that this is some sort of coincidence. In fact most people who have pedophile tendencies are able to blend in with the community and choose to pursue a job or volunteer program where they will be working directly with children. Protect your children and let the police do their jobs! They know what they are doing!

  • Jazzy

    I'd be very concerned about anyone with child porn on their computers. It doesn't matter how good a teacher or how nice he seems. The fact that it is on both computers indicates he is guilty unless he has someone tampering with both. Those things don't get there by themselves. He wants the evidence thrown out, hmmm. If something got on my computer I would investigate how it got there includin question anyone that's been on it. I don't know but parents need to not be blinded by the fact that they like him.

  • David

    Accidentally having kiddie porn on a home computer? Possible.
    Accidentally having kiddie porn on a work computer? Not likely, but possible.
    Accidentally having kiddie porn on both home and work computers? Not a likely story.

    • Rachael

      I agree, it also seems strange to have porn of any kind in THAT kind of work environment. I have no qualms with pornography in general, but I would personally feel a bit uncomfortable with viewing it at that kind of job.

      But yeah… kiddie porn at both places seems pretty suspect. And relying on "gut feeling and instinct" is ridiculous. Plenty of good parents have had their children abused at the hands of a family friend. I doubt they felt that the person maybe was capable of abuse and left their kids with them anyway.

      I certainly hope this was all a misunderstanding, but I sure doubt it.

  • joe

    He likes kids, likes to work them I guess, all day long… Reminds me of the elementary school teacher who got busted on "To catch a preditor", then got caught doing it again with web cams by undercover cops on the web.

  • Mom of 5

    A good lesson – Don't buy a used computer unless you know how to clean the hard drive. When you synch your home laptop to your work computer you also share whatever was left on that hard drive. If the computers are open for anyone to use – you have no idea what other people will download.

  • thunder7

    Prosecuters are not revealing in what forum the pornagraphy was in, in this story.He could of been fooled into downloading a picture of a minor. He could of opened an e-mail and clicked a link. His e-mail could of been hacked. A pop-up could of directed him to a bad site. He could of meet someone and they lied about their age. The fact that its 2 counts, one per pc says that it was not habitual ongoing thing. The fact that no children have come up with any allegations against him is positively in his favor. He's been teaching for 18 years without any problems?