York County considers new juvenile detention center at prison

Sexually violent predator decision coming on Puterbaugh

Sean Philip Cotter

A judge will determine by the end of the week whether the former Dover Area High School music teacher convicted of molesting children and producing child pornography is a sexually violent predator.

Matthew B. Puterbaugh, 48, of 1000 Conewago Road in Dover Township, had a Megan's Law hearing Wednesday afternoon in front of Judge Harry Ness, according to Kyle King, a spokesman for the York County District Attorney's Office.

Such hearings are meant to help the judge decide what the offender's sex-offender registration requirements should be. If Puterbaugh is found to be a sexually violent predator, he'll have to register for the rest of his life.

Ness will issue his decision by the end of the week, King said via text message.

Puterbaugh's attorney, Alan Goldberg, could not be reached by phone on Wednesday.

This hearing is in connection with a guilty plea Puterbaugh entered in June to charges of molesting one of his underage students, for which he was sentenced to 5 to 10 years behind bars. That sentence is concurrent with a federal sentence of 15 years for having hundreds of images of child pornography.

The girl who he pleaded guilty to molesting — who was in fourth grade when he first acted inappropriately toward her — has sued both him and the Dover Area School District in federal court, alleging the district mishandled her original reports.

In February 2014, police filed 661 counts of possession of child pornography against Puterbaugh, which were later amended to seven all-encompassing felony counts.

Puterbaugh, who taught music and was band director at Dover Intermediate School, was initially placed on unpaid leave. In August 2014, the school board voted unanimously to fire him.

— Reach Sean Cotter atscotter@yorkdispatch.com.