UPPER MARLBORO, Md. — A child pornography case that shocked the Prince George’s County school system will be allowed to proceed after potential legal problems arose when the defendant wrote a troubling letter to the court, claiming his rights had been violated.
Deonte Carraway, who is facing 270 charges related to producing child pornography, penned a letter in June saying he has not been receiving adequate legal representation.
But in a Prince George’s County courtroom Thursday, Carraway went back on that claim, telling Judge Beverley Woodard that he is satisfied with his attorney.
Carraway also said he now remembers signing a waiver related to a state law that requires trial proceedings to begin within 180 days of when charges are filed. Initially, in his letter to the court, Carraway claimed he never signed that document.
After clearing up the matter, Judge Beverly Woodard dismissed Carraway and set his next court date for late September.
In the meantime, Carraway will need to appear in a different courtroom next month for sentencing in his federal case. Separate from the 270 state charges, he pleaded guilty to 15 federal countsearlier this year.
Carraway admitted to directing young students to engage in sexual activity with each other and with himself, using cellphones to record the acts. Federal prosecutors said he personally recorded videos and also instructed children to send him pornographic content.
The acts occurred at several locations including Judge Sylvania Woods Elementary School, where Carraway was a school volunteer, and inside private homes.
Police arrested Carraway in 2016 after a family member of one of the victims discovered nude images on the victim’s phone and reported it to authorities.
Prosecutors believe he is responsible for abusing at least 23 children.
The case sparked reform efforts within Prince George’s County Public Schools and caused outrage among parents who filed lawsuits against the system, claiming administrators did not do enough to identify and stop Carraway’s crimes.