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At St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park, a long-time former choir director pled guilty on to more than 24 charges for secretly filming students as they undressed in his office. The Johnson County District Court received a guilty plea from 46-year-old Joseph Heidesch during a video teleconference hearing, according to The Kansas City Star.

Heidesch pleaded to 24 charges of privacy invasion and one count of possessing sexually explicit material of a minor after prosecutors and his defense lawyer came to an agreement. Heidesch was required to be present in person for his sentencing ordered by Judge Michael P. Joyce.

In accordance with the conditions of the plea deal, prosecutors and Heidesch’s attorney are asking that he serve nearly six years in a Kansas prison. Additionally, he would have to register as a sex offender with the state.

Authorities claim that hundreds of recordings showing 25 identified victims in various degrees of exposure, including some who were nude, were found on a hard drive taken as evidence. The hidden camera was installed in Heidesch’s office, a location where students were known to change into choir uniforms.

Legal Recourse For Survivors Of Sexual Assault, Abuse Or Exploitation

Abuse Guardians is dedicated to helping survivors of sexual assault and exploitation seek justice against the institutions that allowed or facilitated their abuse. Our team of experienced attorneys has extensive knowledge of the legal system and a deep understanding of the unique challenges that survivors of sexual abuse often face.

We are committed to advocating for the rights of survivors and working tirelessly to hold institutions accountable for their actions or lack thereof. Whether through civil litigation, criminal prosecution, or other legal remedies, we will work with you to find the best path forward to get the justice you deserve. We understand that seeking legal action can be a difficult and emotional process, and we are here to support you every step of the way. For more information on resources available for victims of sexual assault, visit our page:


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