A former Whitesboro Independent School District educator has been arrested for online solicitation of a minor.
Dallas station WFAA reported Thursday that Jim Cude, who previously worked for Whitesboro ISD for 16 years, was arrested after he allegedly sent “sexually graphic messages” to an undercover police officer posing as a 13-year-old boy on a dating app. Cude currently serves as the band director for North Mesquite High School, but has been placed on administrative leave, WFAA reports.
“Police contacted Mesquite ISD late last night to inform us of the arrest of North Mesquite Band Director Jim Cude in Dallas as part of a federal investigation,” Mesquite ISD said in a letter sent home to the district’s parents Thursday. “He is charged with online solicitation of a minor. We have no other details about the investigation at this time, and we are not aware of any inappropriate behavior involving any of our students. Per district policy, Mr. Cude has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.”
Calls placed to multiple phone numbers listed under Cude’s name went unanswered Thursday and messages were not immediately returned.
A Whitesboro ISD staff member said Superintendent Ryan Harper would not comment on Cude’s arrest Thursday. The North Mesquite High School website stated Cude has 32 years of teaching experience and was hired as the school’s band director in 2018. His bio on the website for the Association of Texas Small School Bands, for which he is listed as immediate past-president, states Cude served as band director at Whitesboro High School from 2002 until the site was update in August of last year.
The ATSSB bio also states Cude was the contemporary music pastor and a deacon at the First Baptist Church of Whitesboro. A message left at the the church’s office was not immediately returned Thursday afternoon. The church’s website listed Cude as a worship pastor as recently as last Saturday, but by Thursday, Cude’s image and name had been removed from the website.
A search for Cude in Dallas County’s jail records yielded no records. A representative of the Dallas Police Department’s public information office said the agency had no records pertaining to Cude. A message left for the Mesquite Police Department was not immediately returned Thursday afternoon.
“We know our more than 400 band students must be feeling extremely betrayed, and we are sensitive to the range of emotions they must be experiencing,” the Mesquite ISD letter read. “The band directors and campus administrators, as well as our counseling staff, are available to help students through this very difficult time.”