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Paul Kane teacher charged with sexual exploitation

Bryce Hughes is set to appear in court April 25.
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CHARGED — Paul Kane teacher Bryce Hughes, shown here at a Shell gas station in October 2021, has been charged with five offences related to sexual exploitation and child pornography. He is set to appear in court on these matters April 25, 2022. FILE PHOTO/St. Albert Gazette

The St. Albert RCMP have charged a Paul Kane teacher with sexual exploitation and making child pornography.

The St. Albert RCMP announced March 31 that they have charged Bryce Hughes, a 28-year-old male from Edmonton, with sexual exploitation, agreeing to or arranging a sexual offence against a child, making sexually explicit material available to a child, making child pornography, and possession of child pornography.

Hughes is a teacher and coach at Paul Kane High School.

The St. Albert RCMP said they opened a historical sexual exploitation investigation on Feb. 23 after receiving information that a minor had been sexually exploited by a teacher. That investigation led to the aforementioned charges being laid against Hughes.

In an email, St. Albert RCMP Cpl. Morgan Kyle said the alleged offences occurred between 2018 and 2021.

St. Albert Public Schools superintendent Krimsen Sumners said Hughes was removed from Paul Kane and suspended from teaching in mid-February as soon as the district learned of the allegations against him. An internal investigation by administration and the Alberta Teachers’ Association is underway. Hughes has been directed to not have any contact with anyone associated with St. Albert Public Schools.

Sumners said the minor in this case was a former Paul Kane student. Sumners said that to the best of her knowledge these charges were not related to Hughes’s coaching activities.

“This is an extremely difficult time for staff and students, and we’re doing all we can to help,” Sumners said.

A March 31 post to the St. Albert Public website said support will be available to students as they return to class from spring break on April 4. The district urged parents and students to call school staff if they need help working through this situation.

Kyle said Hughes has been released from custody with the conditions that he not have contact with the victim and not seek or obtain employment or volunteer positions which involve being in a position of trust or authority toward people under the age of 18.

Hughes is set to appear in court April 25. St. Albert Victim Services has reached out to assist the victim.

St. Albert RCMP said they believe there may be additional victims in this case and encourage them to come forward to police.

Anyone with information should call the St. Albert RCMP at 780-458-7700 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.

Kevin Ma

About the Author: Kevin Ma

Kevin Ma joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2006. He writes about Sturgeon County, education, the environment, agriculture, science and aboriginal affairs. He also contributes features, photographs and video.
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