CRIME

SLC School Board Member Resigns Following Child Pornography, Rape Investigation

Jun 4, 2021, 7:19 PM | Updated: 11:40 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A board member for the Salt Lake City School District has resigned following his arrest in a child pornography and rape investigation.

Joél-Léhi Organista, 29, submitted a letter of resignation to Board leadership just before 5:15 p.m. Friday, according to Yándary Chatwin, executive director of communications and community relations with the Salt Lake City School District.

Organista was charged Friday in 3rd District Court by the Utah Attorney General’s Office with one count of object rape of a child and one count of sexual exploitation of a minor, both first-degree felonies. He was also charged with nine counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, a second-degree felony.

According to Organista’s jail booking documents, the investigation started with a child pornography report to the CyberTipline of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

Investigators wrote that during a police interview “Organista admitted to having downloaded, viewed, and kept the images and videos containing child pornography in his Dropbox account.”

Using a search warrant, investigators then got access to Organista’s phone and other electronic devices and report finding a Snapchat account containing sexual conversations with minors.

“In the Snapchat communications, Joel is clearly notified of the ages of the children and asks for naked photographs and directs the children to do sexual acts,” police write in the affidavit of probable cause.

The affidavit went on to say that Organista has access to young children through his current position of trust with grades kindergarten through high school.

Organista was elected to Salt Lake City School District’s Board of Education last fall and started his term in January.

More information can be found at this link.


KSL TV’s Ladd Egan contributed to this report. 

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

Crime

Yvette Rodier, shooting survivor...
Amy Donaldson, KSL Podcasts

LETTER PODCAST: Victim says bullet wounds were easiest part of recovery

When Yvette Rodier woke up in a hospital, she knew, even before anyone told her, that her friend, Zachary Snarr, was dead.
4 days ago
The stranger holding a handgun in the driveway....
Shelby Lofton

‘He seemed prepared for battle:’ Neighbors terrified after encounter with armed stranger

Federal Heights residents are shaken up after a suspicious encounter with a stranger Friday afternoon.
5 days ago
surveillance image of possible shooter...
Associated Press

Police: 6 California killings may be work of serial killer

Ballistics tests have linked the fatal shootings of six men and the wounding of one woman in California— all potentially at the hands of a serial killer — in crimes going back more than a year.
5 days ago
Emergency lights...
Pat Reavy, KSL.com

Utah teen who stabbed sleeping couple woke up wanting to hurt someone, charges say

A 15-year-old boy accused of entering a Taylorsville home at random and stabbing a couple in their bed told police he woke up early that morning wanting to "hurt someone," according to court records.
5 days ago
Bags of heroin, some laced with fentanyl, are displayed before a press conference regarding a major...
Michael Houck

Utah man arrested at Salt Lake Airport with 4,100 fentanyl pills and 378 heroin doses

A man was arrested at the Salt Lake Airport with fentanyl pills planned to be distributed in Utah on Thursday.  
5 days ago
OREM, UT - FEBRUARY 21: A bump stock is installed on an AK-47 at Good Guys Gun and Range on Februar...
Associated Press

Supreme Court rejects bump stock ban cases, one from Utahn

The Supreme Court says it won't take up two cases that involved challenges to a ban enacted during the Trump administration on bump stocks. Those are the gun attachments that allow semi-automatic weapons to fire rapidly like machine guns.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Hand turning a thermostat knob to increase savings by decreasing energy consumption. Composite imag...
Lighting Design

5 Lighting Tips to Save Energy and Money in Your Home

Advances in lighting technology make it easier to use smart features to cut costs. Read for tips to save energy by using different lighting strategies in your home.
Portrait of smiling practitioner with multi-ethnic senior people...
Summit Vista

How retirement communities help with healthy aging

There are many benefits that retirement communities contribute to healthy aging. Learn more about how it can enhance your life, or the life of your loved ones.
Happy diverse college or university students are having fun on their graduation day...
BYU MBA at the Marriott School of Business

How to choose what MBA program is right for you: Ask these questions before you apply!

Wondering what MBA program is right for you? Take this quiz before you apply to see if it will help you meet your goals.
Cloud storage technology with 3d rendering drawer with files in cloud...
PC Laptops

How backing up your computer can help you relieve stress

Don't wait for something bad to happen before backing up your computer. Learn how to protect your data before disaster strikes.
young woman with stickers on laptop computer...
Les Olson

7 ways print marketing materials can boost your business

Custom print marketing materials are a great way to leave an impression on clients or customers. Read for a few ideas to spread the word about your product or company.
young woman throwing clothes to organize a walk in closet...
Lighting Design

How to organize your walk-in closet | 7 easy tips to streamline your storage today

Read our tips to learn how to organize your walk-in closet for more storage space. These seven easy tips can help you get the most out of your space.
SLC School Board Member Resigns Following Child Pornography, Rape Investigation