Former Santa Cruz Surf Instructor Faces Child Sex Abuse Charges; 100’s Of Victims Suspected
SANTA CRUZ (CBS SF) — Prosecutors in Santa Cruz County have filed 28 criminal charges against a former surfing instructor in a child sex abuse and pornography case that police believe involved “hundreds” of victims.
Dylan Greiner, 38, who taught children how to surf at three Santa Cruz schools, was being held on $1 million bail after his arraignment on the charges Wednesday, according to Santa Cruz County Assistant District Attorney Michael Gilman.
The case against Greiner includes four felony charges of lewd and lascivious behavior on a minor 14 or 15 years old for his alleged touching of children, Gilman said.
The surfing teacher is also charged with five felony counts of possessing child pornography, 11 felony counts of using a minor to create child pornography, one felony count of distributing lewd material to a minor and two felony counts of duplicating child pornography, Gilman said.
The other five counts, all misdemeanors, involve invasion of privacy with a camcorder or other device, stemming from Greiner’s alleged use of a video camera to film children under 18 who were nude in a changing, fitting or other room, Gilman said.
Greiner, who was at the hearing Wednesday in Santa Cruz County Superior Court with his attorney Dustin Gordon, did not enter a plea and his arraignment was continued to Sept. 10, Gilman said.
Meanwhile, Santa Cruz police Deputy Chief Steve Clark said investigators believe that the Greiner case involves “hundreds” of juvenile victims, including girls whose crotch areas were photographed and might amount to felony child pornography.
The department is receiving 15 to 20 calls a day from people concerned that their child may have been one of those photographed by Greiner, Clark said.
In addition to teaching children at the Santa Cruz Surf School at 131 Center St. that the teacher himself owned, Greiner also taught surfing at the Boys and Girls Club and the Seahorse Swim School, both in Santa Cruz.
Clark announced Thursday that police learned Greiner allegedly took inappropriate photos of kids at the Boys and Girls Club and that detectives uncovered an enormous trove of more than 500,000 photos and videos from Greiner’s computers.
Greiner used a video camera and a still camera with a zoom lens to take digital images, Clark said.
Police are still trying to identify many young girls who were alleged victims of Greiner in his photos and videos, the deputy chief said.
The department has received more than 100 phone calls and emails from parents in California and across the country inquiring about their children, according to Clark.
Some people made annual trips to Santa Cruz in order for their family members to take surfing lessons from Greiner, Clark said.
Photos and videos found at Greiner’s home focused on girls’ breasts, buttocks and genitalia and some images were of girls as young as 8 years old at the beach, police said.
Concerned parents and potential victims may contact Santa Cruz police detectives at (831) 420-5820 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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