A Lake Highlands English teacher has been arrested, accused of possession of child pornography.
Investigators with the Collin County Sheriff's Department and Plano Police Department said they arrested Dante Schmidt, of Allen, early Tuesday morning after receiving a tip he was downloading and sharing child pornography.
Police said they searched Schmidt's home Monday night at about 6 p.m. and that he admitted to possessing the material and pointed out the computer he used to download and share the illegal images.
That computer was seized and will be forensically examined as evidence in the case. An arrest warrant was secured at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday and Schmidt was taken into custody without incident about an hour later.
Police said they do not believe any students are victims. According to the school, Schmidt taught English and had been at the campus for three years.
In a tweet that was deleted sometime Tuesday, the Richardson ISD College and Career Readiness Department recognized Schmidt in July 2017 after he was named Rhetoric Teacher of the Year by Texas OnRamps.
According to UT, "The path to Instructor of the Year began with a rigorous application process that included nominations, essays and letters of recommendation. Two committees of educational leaders from The University of Texas at Austin spearheaded the anonymous selection of the six honorees. The competitive pool of candidates included more than 200 Texas teachers who had implemented OnRamps courses in 2016-2017."
Lake Highlands Principal Dr. Joshua Delich said they learned of the allegations against Schmidt Tuesday morning and that the district placed him on leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
Schmidt is currently being held in the Plano City Jail. It is not clear if he's obtained an attorney. Police said additional charges may be filed in the case.