Law & Justice

Former Gym Teacher Who Was Head Wrestling Coach at East Orange High School Indicted on Child Pornography and Drug Charges

9c11f7dff4c09473efcf_c5d33e0cc67e3a7429ec_justin-bozinta.jpg
Justin Bozinta Credits: NJ Office of the Attorney General
9c11f7dff4c09473efcf_c5d33e0cc67e3a7429ec_justin-bozinta.jpg

TRENTON, NJ – Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino announced that a former gym teacher who also was the head wrestling coach at East Orange Campus High School has been indicted on charges of possessing child pornography and operating a marijuana production facility.

Justin W. Bozinta, 39, of Roselle, who is suspended from his job as a physical education teacher at Costley Middle School in East Orange, was indicted Tuesday, Jan. 31, by a state grand jury on charges of third-degree possession of child pornography, first-degree maintaining or operating a marijuana production facility, second-degree possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, second-degree possession of marijuana within 500 feet of a public park, and fourth-degree possession of marijuana.

Bozinta was arrested on Feb. 13, 2015 by the Division of Criminal Justice, assisted by the Roselle Police Department. An investigation by the Division of Criminal Justice Financial & Computer Crimes Bureau revealed that images of child pornography allegedly were uploaded by Bozinta to a Google+ photo account using a computer located at a school facility. The investigation, which began with a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, allegedly linked Bozinta to the email account used to upload the images. While executing a search warrant at Bozinta’s home on Sheridan Avenue in Roselle as part of the child pornography investigation, detectives found a major indoor marijuana growing operation. The “grow room” was equipped with a special ventilation system, high-powered lights and chemicals to encourage plant growth. Approximately 40 growing marijuana plants were found, along with packaging materials. Numerous images of child pornography were found on Bozinta’s computer equipment. Investigative assistance was provided by ICE Homeland Security Investigations, the New Jersey State Police and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office.

Sign Up for E-News

“It’s shocking that a man who had responsibility for teaching and coaching young students allegedly was uploading child pornography on a school computer and farming marijuana in his home for distribution,” said Attorney General Porrino. “We’ll see that Bozinta is vigorously prosecuted for his alleged crimes and never again works in a school environment where he could harm children.”

“Our investigation revealed that Bozinta was living a double life, secretly trafficking drugs and child pornography,” said Director Elie Honig of the Division of Criminal Justice. “The fact that he was a teacher engaging in these alleged crimes, which cause so much harm to children, makes this case particularly egregious.”

After his arrest, Bozinta was lodged in the Union County Jail with bail set at $275,000, full cash required. He has since posted bail. Bozinta was hired by the East Orange School District in 2000. The district suspended Bozinta after he was initially charged and has filed papers to terminate his employment.

Deputy Attorney General Marie McGovern presented the case to the grand jury for the Division of Criminal Justice Financial & Computer Crimes Bureau. The investigation was conducted by Deputy Attorney General McGovern, Detective Richard DaSilva Jr. and former Detective Sgt. Thomas Turley, under the supervision of Bureau Chief Michael A. Monahan, former Deputy Bureau Chief Kenneth Sharpe, Deputy Bureau Chief Julia Glass, Lt. Lisa A. Shea and Lt. Jon Powers.

Attorney General Porrino thanked the Roselle Police Department, ICE Homeland Security Investigations in Newark, the New Jersey State Police Digital Technology Investigations Unit and Marijuana Eradication Unit, and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office for their valuable assistance.

The first-degree charge of operating a marijuana production facility carries a sentence of 10 to 20 years in state prison, including a mandatory period of parole ineligibility of one-third to one-half of the sentence imposed, and a fine of up to $750,000. The charge applies to production of marijuana if it involves more than five pounds of marijuana or more than 10 marijuana plants. Second-degree charges carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000. Third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000, while fourth-degree charges carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a $10,000 fine.

The charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

The indictment was handed up to Superior Court Judge Timothy P. Lydon in Mercer County, who assigned the case to Essex County, where Bozinta will be ordered to appear in court at a later date for arraignment.

Follow the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office online at TwitterFacebookInstagram & YouTube. The social media links provided are for reference only. The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office does not endorse any non-governmental websites, companies or applications.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Millburn/Short Hills

Video: Scoutmaster Ken Fineran Street Dedication Ceremony

May 21, 2018

MILLBURN, NJ - Millburn Township and Boy Scout Troop 17 of St. Rose of Lima honored the life and accomplishments of late Scoutmaster Kenneth W. Fineran on Sunday, May 20. Troop 17 Scouts, in conjunction with Millburn Township and St. Rose of Lima Church.

Millburn Student's Bike Stolen, Millburn Police Investigating

June 12, 2018

On June 5, 2018 Millburn Police Officer Tavares responded to the Louis Vuitton store at The Mall at Short Hills on a theft report. Louis Vuitton personnel report a black male with dread locks wearing a black t-shirt, red shorts, black leggings, and white/red sneakers took two pairs of sunglasses valued at $870.00 and left the store without making payment. The incident is under investigation by ...

AtlantiCast

AtlantiCast Episode 17

On this week’s AtlantiCast, it’s National Men’s Health Month, so check out important health tips for you or the men in your life, learn about groundbreaking research into breast cancer treatment that could mean an end to chemotherapy for some patients, meet a local sports hero who’s living his baseball dreams thanks to Goryeb Children’s Hospital and much ...

Get Empowered to Help Prevent Suicide

June 12, 2018

Over the past week social media and the news have been filled with stories and articles encouraging people to seek help if they’re in emotional distress. There have been countless articles about the need to break the silence around the topic of mental health and suicide, and I am encouraged by the support people are extending to others.

Often, the death by suicide by prominent ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_5e177eaae57739064cd4_397f63ad2fb50392a776_29178074_2107642336134787_2638697507160326144_n

Sun, June 24, 11:00 AM

Totowa

MakerFest 2018

Wed, June 27, 6:00 PM

Reeves-Reed Arboretum, Summit

Inkubate

Arts & Entertainment Home & Garden

Carousel_image_ebf7aa55086e734989d5_btpffstbh

Thu, June 28, 6:30 PM

The Book House, Millburn

Book to Plate

Food & Drink

Meet Your Local Prosthodontist

June 22, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ - Dr. Efterpi (Effie) Zantopoulos Deegan of Deegan Dental received her Certificate of Prosthodontics from University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ), after attending dental school there as well.  She is an alumnus of Rutgers- Newark College of Arts and Sciences and West Orange High School. Dr. Deegan is half-time faculty at Rutgers School ...

NCJW/Essex Hosts The Five Stages of Career Transition with Motivational Speaker Frederica Peterson

LIVINGSTON, NJ -- On Tuesday, June 12, 2018, Frederica Peterson, Motivational Speaker and Career Coach, MA, CPC, ELI-MP, engaged nearly 50 women at the Linda and Rudy Slucker NCJW/Essex Center for Women about moving forward in one’s career and in life. Peterson examined how many women feel stuck and trapped in negative thoughts, but how with the right mindset it’s possible to ...

Millburn-Short Hills Democratic Committee Looking to Fill District Leader Spots

ESSEX COUNTY, NJ - The Millburn-Short Hills Democratic Committee is stronger than ever and proudly represents itself along with Essex County Executive Joseph Di Vincenzo and newly re-elected Essex County Democratic Chairman LeRoy Jones at the Essex County Democratic Reorganization meeting.

The local committee currently has a record 29 of 32 District Leader spots filled. We have a female ...

Cool Ways to Save Money This Summer

As the summer temperatures rise, home cooling costs rise as well. But there are ways to help save money without sweating the heat:

To increase your cooling system’s efficiency by as much as 20%, get it checked out for summer.  A technician will clean the condenser, make sure you have the optimal amount of refrigerant, and ensure the airflow over the coil is ...