Iredell County NC March 3 2013 A former teacher in Iredell County has been charged with an additional 96 counts of taking indecent liberties with children after several more victims came forward that were students in his classroom during the 1970s and 1980s.
John Thomas Patterson, 65, resigned as a 4th grade teacher at Mount Mourne Elementary School in 1987, according to a news release from the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office.
The investigation began in October 2012 when detectives began looking into allegations that Patterson had inappropriately touched 4-5 male students during the mid to late 1980s.
At that time he was charged with 14 counts of taking indecent liberties. Patterson was placed under a $100,000 bond on these charges. Since Patterson’s initial arrest, multiple victims and witnesses have come forward that were students in his classroom from the mid 1970′s through the late 1980′s.
Based on further investigation, more than 16 child victims have been identified and charges have been filed in six of those cases. “He would mess with boys in the class,” said one alleged victim.
An additional 96 taking indecent liberties with children charges were filed and one first degree sex offense was filed against Tom Patterson on February 28, 2013. Patterson was placed under an additional $350,000 bond on the new charges.
Most of the incidents occurred in the classroom although there are some occasions that the abuse occurred outside of the classroom. WBTV was on the scene Friday as investigators removed evidence from Patterson’s home. Patterson was a well liked teacher and befriended many of the families of the children he abused, according to the release.
“Maybe one day he’ll get what is coming to him. I hope he does,” the alleged victim said. The investigation is ongoing.