Waco, Tx (FOX44) – A former Connally Independent School District elementary school teacher has entered guilty pleas to charges of online solicitation and stalking, and has been sentenced to five years in prison.
McLennan County District Attorney Josh Tetens said Timothy Bruner pled to both charges in 54th District Court on Monday. The McLennan County Sheriff’s Office’s Criminal Investigations Division reported that Bruner was arrested in October 2021, and was charged with Online Solicitation of a Minor – as well as stalking – by the Human Trafficking Unit. Investigators said Bruner sent text messages and pictures to a human trafficking investigator posing as an underage person through social media accounts.
At the time of that arrest, Bruner was a second grade teacher within the Connally Independent School District. Bruner was placed on leave from the district immediately. He was subsequently indicted for those charges, then posted $50,000 bond and was released from the McLennan County Jail.
Bruner was arrested again on September 19, 2022 for Stalking by the Human Trafficking Unit following an investigation after another victim came forward, and was then taken back to jail.
The Criminal Investigations Division said that in both cases, Bruner used Instagram to carry out his activities.
Prosecutor Stephen Yip said, “As an educator myself, I know just how much trust families have to put in teachers. Mr. Bruner’s predatory actions will impact his victims long beyond his prison sentence. I pray that with the end of these cases, those victims can begin to heal.”
District Attorney Tetens noted that Prosecutor Yip recently served as a teacher, coach and administrator at Bishop Louis Reicher Catholic School. He is also now away on orders continuing to serve through the Army National Guard.
D.A. Tetens said, “We hope this sentence resonates throughout our community, and both parents and educators know we are continuing to work to protect our children.”