Parents, students shocked following principal's arrest - News, Weather & Sports

Parents, students shocked following principal's arrest

Stephen Goodlett (Source: Hardin County Detention Center) Stephen Goodlett (Source: Hardin County Detention Center)

LARUE COUNTY, KY (WAVE) – Students, parents and neighbors are in shock after the LaRue County High School Principal is arrested on child pornography charges.

Stephen, Kyle Goodlett, 36, has been suspended with pay while this investigation continues according to the LaRue County Public Schools superintendent.

Goodlett is charged with 60 counts of child pornography possession and three counts of distribution, all Class D felonies. 

It’s a tough time for students and staff as they try to comprehend the severity of this investigation.

“I wouldn’t think that he would actually do it, I don’t know,” LaRue County High School senior Ami Druen said. “It’s just shocking honestly.”

PREVIOUS STORY: LaRue Co. High School principal suspended after arrest on child porn charges

Druen said Goodlett is the last person, she would ever think would be at the center of child pornography case. Hired as principal in 2013, she said he was always encouraging.

“He talked to us, like he wanted us to pass the test on the ACT and just wanted us to do the best in school and that’s what we tried to do,” Druen said. 

Thursday night Kentucky State Police showed up to his Elizabethtown home on Bentcreek Drive with a search warrant. The KSP Internet Crimes Against Children’s unit got involved after Elizabethtown Police received a tip that Goodlett was sharing images of child sexual exploitation online. 

Those that know Goodlett said he is a married father of three and his children are 5 years old and younger.

“I just feel really sorry for the family, I’m praying for them because that’s something big honestly for the family to have to go through, especially the three kids,” Druen said. 

At this time, it’s not clear of the victims’ ages or if they were local children, but this case is far from closed.  

“There’s some things that we are still looking at and they took some electronic evidence yesterday and obviously they will be pouring through that for the next several weeks or months to come and we don’t really know right now exactly where the investigation is going to take us, but it’s obviously something we will be working very hard on,” Kentucky State Police Trooper Jeff Gregory said. 

As Goodlett was arraigned in court Friday, students were given a letter to take home to their parents.

“It makes me very leery about the rest of the staff. I mean we have had issues in the past, so I don’t know how else to explain it,” parent Shannon Locke said. 

Last month, the LaRue County High School girls’ basketball coach resigned after he was indicted on a sexual abuse charge involving a female student.

“I worry about them,” parent Tina Pedrick said about her children. “I don’t think everybody is like that, but I worry about them.”

Goodlett remains in the Hardin County Detention Center. He is being held on $75,000 bond. 

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