A swimming instructor and former teacher is now charged with trying to solicit sex from what he thought was a teenage boy.
The suspect -- 58-year-old Charles David Beaver -- was a member of the aquatics department staff at the Jewish Community Centers in Northwest Baltimore and also in Owings Mills.
“At no point did we have any concern about chuck's employment here at the JCC,” said Barak Hermann, President of the JCC of Greater Baltimore. (Full statement below)
That employment involved the training of life-saving techniques and swimming certification. Off-camera, one employee told ABC2 News he found Charles Beaver to be too enthusiastic about the physical contact involved with the job.
But JCC officials said they perform background checks on all potential employees, and beaver's criminal record in Maryland was clean -- until now.
“We were really surprised to learn this morning about the incident and obviously we are cooperating with authorities to make sure we get down to the bottom of it. We're really devastated about what happened,” Hermann said.
This week, police say an undercover detective posed as a pimp online, and contacted Beaver, who they say had expressed interest in "purchasing a sex act" from a child.
“During one of their online conversations the detective also posed as a 15-year-old boy. During that conversation the suspect stated that he wanted to engage in a sexual act with the boy,” said Cpl. John Wachter, a spokesman for the Baltimore County Police Department.
At some point Beaver thought he might have set up a meeting with the boy. That, police say, was never going to happen.
“The detective later told the suspect if he wanted to meet the boys, he could meet them at a hotel room in Baltimore County. When the suspect arrived at that hotel room, we were waiting for him and took him into custody," Wachter said.
Beaver is also a retired school teacher from Carroll County. He has been fired from the JCC.
He is being held at the Baltimore County Detention Center on $100-thousand bond.
Baltimore County Police do not know whether he actually abused anyone, but they are asking anyone with information to call them.
Hermann, president of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Baltimore, said in a statement:
We regret to share with you that this afternoon we were informed by the Baltimore County police that Charles Beaver, an employee in our aquatics department, was arrested and charged with sexual solicitation of a minor and related charges stemming from an internet sting operation conducted by Baltimore County authorities. Our understanding is that the "victim" was an undercover detective posing as a 15-year old boy.
We are deeply disturbed and concerned and intend to fully cooperate with the authorities in their investigation of Mr. Beaver. Mr. Beaver has been terminated from the JCC effective immediately.
The safety of all our members and guests is of the utmost importance and concern to the JCC. To this end, we utilize a professional agency to conduct a rigorous background investigation on all prospective JCC employees as a prerequisite to their employment. This process includes fingerprinting and a search of the Criminal Justice Information System.
If anyone has any questions, concerns or information they want to share, please contact the Baltimore County Police Department at 410-307-2020 or Barak Hermann, President of the JCC at 410-559-3502.
Editor's Note: Police earlier incorrectly stated that the suspect was "in charge of" a summer camp for kids. The story has been updated to reflect that Charles Beaver worked at the summer camp.