Marshals seek ex-LI teacher in porn case

Michael Kelly Reiner in Central Islip. Michael Kelly Reiner in Central Islip. Photo Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan, 2006

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Federal marshals are searching for a former Long Island grade school teacher who did not return last month to the halfway house he was required to live in after serving a 78-month sentence for possessing child pornography on his computer, according to officials and court papers.

Michael Kelly Reiner, 52, had been living in a Brooklyn halfway house since being released from federal prison last year, but has not been seen since May 30, officials said. Though it is not known why Reiner apparently fled, the sources noted that on May 29, Reiner was listed as a sex offender living in New York State by the State Supreme Court in Brooklyn.

The case of Reiner, a teacher of fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders at the Long Island School for the Gifted for 18 years, generated a good deal of press. In addition to his possession of child pornography, he had a number of writings on his personal computer involving cannibalism by getting sexual gratification from eating children, according to court papers.

A number of parents who had children at the Huntington Station school defended Reiner as an excellent, longtime teacher who had never harmed any children. The school fired him after his arrest.

As part of the conditions of his supervised release, Reiner had to return to the halfway house each night after working during the day.

A warrant for his arrest by federal marshals was signed by a federal judge on May 31, according to court papers unsealed Friday in the federal district court in Central Islip.

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Sources said that when federal probation officers went to Reiner's daytime place of employment on May 31 seeking to locate him, they were told that he had called in sick and would not be coming to work, according to sources. The probation officers also were told Reiner had been using the Internet to download material for personal use, the sources said.

As a condition of his supervised release, Reiner was only permitted to use the Internet for work, the sources said. The nature of what he been personally accessing was not known, the sources said.

After Reiner was released from federal prison last year, he lived in the halfway house and agreed to abide by its rules because he had trouble finding a suitable apartment, the sources said.

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Reiner's attorney at the time of his conviction did not return call for comment. Eastern District federal prosecutor Allen Bode declined to comment.

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