No criminal charges to be filed in investigation surrounding Rocky River teachers

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ROCKY RIVER, Ohio (WJW) — No criminal charges will be filed in a police investigation surrounding teachers at Rocky River High School.

Police Chief George Lichman II released a statement to the Fox 8 I-Team Thursday saying the decision not to file charges came after a lengthy investigation.

“Police detectives investigated the complaint, including identifying all included on the text thread, interviewing teachers and witnesses, viewing the text thread at issue, and consulting with City and Cuyahoga County prosecutors,” Lichman said.

Police said Rocky River City School District officials notified officers on March 10 that a video captured Rocky River High School teachers having a conversation including inappropriate comments about a student and referring to possible photos of a student in a text messaging thread.

The video was recorded from an online classroom.

“The investigation has concluded with the determination that there is insufficient evidence of criminal activity to charge anyone involved,” the chief added. “No evidence of photos of students or inappropriate discussions about students were contained in the text message thread among the teachers.”

The video was sent to the I-TEAM. It shows two male teachers talking about a picture another teacher said he had taken of a female student.

“How do you know he sent it to you,” one teacher asks.  The other responds, “He told me.”

The teacher said he never saw the photograph. We are not naming the teachers since they are not criminally charged.

The teachers go on to discuss the teenage girl.  The one male teacher says she is “not much of a student but a nice enough girl.”

The teacher also recalls a conversation he had where another male teacher said the girl was “smoking hot, best in the school.”

The chief added that police investigators remain available if new information indicating criminal activity is discovered.

Even though the criminal investigation is complete for now, an administrative investigation by school officials is still ongoing. A total of six teachers have been taken off the job while that investigation is being done.

Rocky River City Schools Superintendent Michael Shoaf released a statement to the community Thursday night regarding the video taped discussion between the male teachers.  Shoaf said he was “disgusted and I’m shocked and as a father of a teenage daughter in this district, I am angry.”

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