Police in Montgomery County have arrested a music teacher at a Silver Spring elementary school and charged him with 14 counts of child sex abuse and various other charges, including second degree rape.
Lawrence Joynes, 54, was taken into custody at his home in Dundalk. He's accused of abusing 15 female students at New Hamsphire Estates Elementary School, where he's been a teacher for the past 10 years.
The victims were students in kindergarten through second grade. Montgomery County Police say the incidents happened in Joynes music classroom and occurred between 2005 and this year.
But another victim, who police say was abused in the 1990s, has also come forward. Rebecca Innocenti with Montgomery County police says the department is concerned there may be more victims.
"Joynes had been a Montgomery County School teacher for approximately 27 years and we do believe it's likely that there may be additional victims, so we are approaching anyone who believes they have been victimized by Joynes to call our Child Exploitation Unit," Innocenti says.
Montgomery County School officials declined an interview request, but released a statement saying Joynes is no longer an employee, and they are continuing to cooperate with the investigation.
A slate of new legislation has received an endorsement by the Virginia State Crime Commission that they say would give law enforcement more tools to investigate and prosecute child abuse.