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Police in Solon investigating former teacher who had 'inappropriate interactions' with students

The department is asking anyone who feels that they may have been a victim of, or witness to, anything inappropriate to reach out to detectives.
Solon Police Department

SOLON, Ohio — The Solon Police Department's Detective Bureau is investigating a former teacher who had what officers call 'inappropriate interactions' with students. 

In a social media post that was published on Monday, the department is asking anyone who feels that they may have been a victim of, or witness to, anything inappropriate to reach out to Detective Linda Castro (440-337-1460, lcastro@solonohio.org) or Detective Kristi Harvey (440-337-1463, kharvey@solonohio.org). 

If you are a victim and do not want to be involved in the investigation, you are still entitled to resources and/or services from the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center (216-619-6192, or clevelandrapecrisis.org).

3News reached out to Solon City Schools about this matter. A spokesperson gave us the following statement: 

"We take the safety and well-being of all our students – past and present – very seriously. The district always adheres to its legal and ethical responsibilities to fully investigate all allegations and report findings to the proper state and local authorities as appropriate. We are unable to speak to an ongoing police investigation. At the same time, we encourage anyone with material information to contact the Solon Police Department."

In addition, Solon City Schools sent the following letter to families in the district last month when allegations first came out. 

Dear Solon Schools Families,

In recent days we have learned about new allegations of inappropriate contact between a former teacher and student. These allegations are deeply troubling. School should be a safe space and we take seriously our responsibility to students’ physical and emotional well-being. Teachers and educators hold positions of trust with their students.

Late last week, the district became aware of additional allegations involving the same former teacher. The district intends to speak with the affected individuals concerning the allegations about inappropriate contact with a teacher when they were enrolled in the district and obtain additional information, including written statements that could be placed in the former teacher’s personnel files if those individuals so request. The district will advise them to contact the Ohio Department of Education, which licenses educators, if they believe they have information that would be relevant to any ongoing investigations and recommend that they contact the Solon Police Department. The district will assist them in making these connections in any way they desire.

It is the district’s practice to thoroughly investigate all allegations brought to its attention and to report any knowledge or reasonable suspicion of abuse or neglect under Ohio law, as appropriate. When allegations were raised more than two years ago involving the teacher in question, the district promptly investigated the allegations and fulfilled its responsibilities by reporting to the proper state and local authorities. These reports are confidential. During the investigation, the teacher was removed from the classroom and direct contact with students. The actions taken at that time were solely focused on ensuring student safety.

As we continue to learn more in real time – just as many of you are from public postings on social media platforms – we pledge to work with and connect any former students who bring these matters to our attention to the proper authorities. If other students have material information to share, we encourage them to contact the school district and law enforcement immediately. The Solon Police Department Detective Bureau can be reached at 440-337-1465.

We value the partnership we have with students and families. We understand that relationship is based on trust. If you or your child ever experiences or hears of a concerning situation it is imperative that you share the information with us immediately. Students can always either speak with district administrators or utilize the district’s Safe School Helpline (1-800-418- 6423, ext. 359, or text TIPS to 66746), which has been in place for more than a decade to promote school safety and provide students, parents and staff members the opportunity to report inappropriate or illegal activity. Although we say it all the time, we really do mean that if you see something, say something. The district is committed to promptly investigating complaints and taking appropriate responsive action based upon the outcome of those investigations.

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