Virtual Depew Union Free School public meeting interrupted by pornographic images


DEPEW, N.Y. (WIVB)–Parents who participated in a virtual public meeting with Depew Union Free School on Wednesday may have caught a view of some inappropriate images of human and animal pornography.

Depew Union Free School Superintendent Jeffrey R. Rabey said that while he did not see the inappropriate material, other did, so officials had to pause the public meeting for about 10 minutes to remove the troublemakers from the virtual public meeting on Google Meet.

Rabey said he was told that the inappropriate material was only on the screen for a few seconds.

“The problem that people don’t realize is it was a public forum as required by the governor,” Rabey told News 4.

Once someone types in a name to join the meeting, “We have to allow them to come in,” he said.

Rabey said that about 10 people got booted from the meeting, which was the final of three public virtual meetings the school system held on reopening plans during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

Roughly 40 people were in the virtual meeting room when the incident occurred at about 3:45 p.m.

He said the school system filed complaints with the FBI, local police and Google.

Rabey said the program that students and teachers use for virtual learning is password protected, encrypted and not public. Therefore, it’s unlikely a similar incident could happen during virtual learning sessions.

Dan Telvock is an award-winning investigative producer and reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2018. See more of his work here.

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