Stroudsburg, Monroe County – A well-known children’s choir director made a surprise guilty plea in Monroe County Court Monday. Kenneth Bernard Schade plead guilty to having sexual contact with a boy and possessing two suitcases full of child pornography.
As deputies lead him out of the courtroom, Schade mumbled, “John three-sixteen.” Before making that remark, Schade admitted he had sexual contact with a boy younger than 16 in the ‘90s. The boy was a member of Schade’s choir, “The Singing Boys of Pennsylvania.” Schade also admitted he had two suitcases full of child pornography.
Schade’s Attorney Phil Lauer said, "None of it is good obviously and to the extent that anything did happen, I know Dr. Schade well enough to know that he doesn't feel good about it." Schade could face a maximum of 12 to 24 years in prison. He will also likely have to register as a sex offender. Assistant District Attorney Michael Rakaczewski said, "We believe he should be in jail for an extended period of time."
Lauer noted investigators have talked to more than 100 people about Schade’s history. Some say Schade molested them and prosecutors note Schade may have victimized more children. "We could not prosecute those cases because of issues with jurisdiction or statute of limitation issues,” explained Rakaczewski.
Schade is 74 years old so he could potentially spend the rest of his life in jail. The judge did not yet set a sentencing date.