Rochester Music Teacher, Philip M. Close Pleads Guilty To 74 Charges, Including 61 Counts Of Production Of Child Pornography
ROCHESTER, N.Y (STL.News) U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced that Philip M. Close, 43, of Rochester, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Charles A. Siragusa to a 74-count indictment, including 61 counts of production of child pornography and 13 counts of possession of material containing child pornography involving prepubescent minors. The charges carry a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years in prison, a maximum 2,090 years in prison, and a $18,500,000 fine.
“The defendant occupied a position of trust with respect to his students,” stated U.S. Attorney Kennedy. “His perverse violation of that trust, together with our duty to protect our children, warrant the defendant being held fully accountable for all that he did, and full accountability is precisely what plea ensures.”
Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan K. McGuire, who is handling the case, stated that from 2016 to 2019, the defendant owned the Close School of Music on West Ridge Road in the Town of Parma and provided private music lessons to children of all ages. During that time, Close hid spy cameras throughout the school and secretly recorded the students, parents, and other teachers.