Wilston’s St Columba’s Primary School. Picture: Google Maps
Wilston’s St Columba’s Primary School. Picture: Google Maps

Teacher charged with filming girls may have done it before

A parent is calling for a broader police investigation into the past of a Brisbane primary school teacher who took his own life after being charged with secretly filming female students in a change room.

The Australian reports that parents have raised concerns that Michael Patrick Robertson, 51, a Year 6 teacher at St Columbia's Primary School, may have done the same thing a decade ago.

Robertson died on February 25 after being charged with two counts of making a recording in breach of privacy.

Michael Patrick Robertson.
Michael Patrick Robertson.

Parents allege Robertson did something similar at a Brisbane Catholic primary school in 2010.

A parent told The Australian that he would instruct the young girls to change in a classroom and then stay with his back turned. Similar allegations were made about Robertson at St Columbia's Primary School.

"When it came for time for swimming lessons, Mr Robbo would send the boys out of the classroom to get changed and would stay in the room while the eight-year-old girls would get changed, albeit allegedly facing away from them," the parent said.

"But in hindsight, the question is, was there a recording device in the room? Are there photos of my eight-year-old daughter circulating the dark web on pedophile ¬forums."

A Queensland Police statement on Friday stated that the investigation was continuing, including the forensic analysis of electronic devices seized in a search of his office and home.

"The investigation including examination of evidence is ongoing. Should these ¬examinations identify victims, their families will be engaged as part of these ongoing inquiries.

"Police cannot provide further details at this sensitive stage of the investigation."

Robertson killed himself within days of being arrested and charged with the two offences.

He had previously been named in a parents' complaint over the alleged mishandling of a child protection issue involving a female primary school student.

Catholic Education said in a statement that: "BCE has strict processes and procedures in place that ensure appropriate responses to complaints, including immediate referral to police when required. Once that occurs, BCE provides all assistance possible to police.

"For matters not requiring police involvement, BCE engages independent investigators when necessary.

"Anyone raising concerns with BCE is assured of confidentiality. BCE does not publish details of its internal investigations."

Family members could not be contacted.

Queensland Police last week said investigations had not identified any direct sexual offending against any children. "The man died in non-suspicious circumstances,'' police said.

 

Originally published as Teacher charged with filming girls may have done it before


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