Mississippi News

Former Starkville teacher charged in Georgia sexual abuse material case

A federal grand jury has returned a 21-count indictment this week charging a former high school teacher with producing, distributing, receiving and possessing child sexual abuse material (CSAM).

Michael Allen Dendy, 32, of Milledgeville, Georgia, is charged with five counts of production of child pornography, seven counts of distribution of child pornography, eight counts of receipt of child pornography and one count of possession of child pornography. If convicted, Dendy faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years in prison up to a maximum sentence of thirty years in prison for each count of production of child pornography; Dendy faces a mandatory minimum of five years in prison up to a maximum sentence of twenty years in prison for each count of distribution and receipt of child pornography; and Dendy faces a maximum sentence of ten years in prison for possession of child pornography. The indictment was returned by a federal grand jury on July 11.

The indictment alleges that Dendy enticed minor children to engage in sexually explicit acts which were filmed or photographed. In addition, Dendy allegedly distributed, received and possessed child sexual abuse material (CSAM) of minors.

Dendy was a teacher at Washington County High School in Sandersville, Georgia, from Aug. 2020 until his arrest on Jan. 20, 2023. Dendy taught at three schools previously: Griffin High School in Griffin, Georgia, from 2018-2020; St. Charles High School in Waldorf, Maryland, from 2017-2018; and Starkville High School in Starkville, Mississippi, from 2014-2016.

Parents and guardians of children who may have encountered Dendy and have concerns related to this investigation can contact the Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) tip line at 1-866-347-2423.

The case is being investigated by Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office with significant assistance from the Leesburg, Virginia, Police Department, the Charles County, Maryland, Sheriff’s Office and the Middle Judicial Circuit, Georgia, District Attorney’s Office. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Peach.

An indictment is only an allegation of criminal conduct, and all defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law beyond a reasonable doubt.

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