St. Petersburg Police Press Release

Chief of Police
1301 First Avenue North
St. Petersburg, FL 33705

(727) 893-7550


For Immediate Release
Report number: 2020-003824
Date of original release: 12-23-20

School Maintenance Worker Faces Serious Charges

Released on 12-23-20 at 1:11 p.m

A plant operator at Morgan Fitzgerald Middle School faces charges in connection with using his personal computer to possess and distribute child pornography. When he learned he was under investigation, he attempted to destroy the computer by running over it with his vehicle and throwing it in a dumpster.

St. Petersburg detectives arrested Joseph Leonard, DOB 5-18-78, of St. Petersburg, on Tuesday, December 22, and charged him with unlawful use of a two-way communications device and tampering with physical evidence. This is still an ongoing investigation.

Leonard worked evenings (2pm-11pm) and had minimal contact with students. After his arrest, he resigned from his position with the Pinellas School District. Although detectives have no indication that any children at the school were victims, anyone with additional information is urged to contact St. Petersburg Police at 727-893-7780 or text SPPD + your tip to TIP411.

Joseph Leonard

Joseph Leonard

St. Petersburg Police Media Relations - (727) 893-7550
YOLANDA FERNANDEZ - Public Information Officer