Thomas Anthony Eisan, 25, is charged with possessing child pornography, making available child pornography, unsafe storage of a firearm and breaching a court order, after a search of his home by the Internet Child Exploitation unit.
“We have information that he was in close proximity with children as part of his employment,” said Halifax police Const. Pierre Bourdages.
CBC News has learned that Eisan has worked for a number of Halifax organizations that deal with children, including the YMCA and, according to his online resume, St. Joseph's Children’s Centre.
Most recently, Eisan has been employed as a live-in nanny and a frequent babysitter for as many as a dozen neighbourhood children.
A woman who lives in Eisan’s neighbourhood and asked not to be identified said police have interviewed her and many of her neighbours.
“I also feel like he’s broken a huge amount of trust and safety that this neighbourhood had and that it will take a long time. It’s one of these things you think, ‘This never happens to me, this happens to other people, it’s very rare.’ And then all of a sudden it comes to you and it’s shocking,“ she said.
Police said there's no indication that local children are involved in any of the child pornography images that Eisan is alleged to have kept and shared.
But investigators are asking parents to give them photos of their children, of their faces and any identifying marks on their bodies.
In April, Eisan was charged with two counts of sexual assault dating back to July 2012.
He was working for the YMCA of Greater Halifax/Dartmouth at the time.
The alleged assaults do not involve children.
Benjamin Davis, chief operating officer with the YMCA, said Eisan’s employment was terminated in July 2012 after complaints from another staff member.
“We have no information from any sources that indicates any young person was at risk or harmed through interaction with this individual at the YMCA," said Davis.
Police said Eisan appeared in court on Thursday and was released under a number of conditions:
- Not to communicate with children under 16.
- Not to be within 25 metres of a place children frequent.
- Not to have any firearm, crossbow, prohibited weapon/device, restricted weapon, ammunition or explosive substance in his possession.
- Not to possess an electronic device capable of connecting to the internet, including a computer or cell phone.
- Comply with a curfew restricting him to his residence between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., seven days a week, except in the case of a medical emergency.
Police said Eisan was arrested on Black Street in Halifax's north end. He will be back in court on Sept. 4.