Prosecutor receives Lake Station teacher findings
By Carole Carlson email@example.com/648-3154 March 26, 2013 4:30PM
Updated: April 28, 2013 6:40AM
LAKE STATION — The Lake County Prosecutor’s office is now reviewing the March 1 incident of a Edison High School teacher who wrote a threatening message on a blackboard, along with “disturbing” gun-referenced postings by two Lake Station teachers and one administrator on Facebook.
In a statement released Tuesday, Lake Station Police Chief Kevin Garber said findings of the teacher-chalkboard incident and the Facebook postings were given to the prosecutor.
The Facebook postings preceded the chalkboard incident in which veteran business teacher Jeff Kincaid wrote threatening messages to his sixth period class after he learned students cursed at a substitute teacher when Kincaid was absent.
Kincaid’s blackboard message in large letters for his sixth period students was: “You are idiots!” “The guns are loaded.” “Care to try me?”
He was removed from school and placed on paid administrative leave. Last week, Superintendent Dan DeHaven said he expected Kincaid would tender a retirement letter.
The press release stated that police interviewed 55 students and several administrators and staff members. Some students said they felt in fear of their lives, while others didn’t feel they were targeted. Several students in the sixth period class said they felt threatened by the comments.
A majority of students in the second period class told police Kincaid mentioned to them on March 1 that he was thinking about retiring and then followed up, telling them if he did leave he was “leaving with blood on his shirt.”
Another student reported an incident in February in which Kincaid sent her to the office and before she left she told him she was going to college even without his class. She told police Kincaid told her: “Good, on your way down there, I hope you get hit by a train.”
Meanwhile on March 5, police learned of comments about solving problems with guns placed on Facebook. Police viewed a printout of the deleted Feb. 21 comments that appeared to be a conversation between an Edison High administrative staffer, an Edison High teacher and a Polk Elementary teacher. The comments include:
Edison administrative staff member: “Like Charlie’s Angels...on a mission. We just need matching outfits (well xxxx and I have that covered) and guns! Yes, having guns would help us make change happen much faster...”
Edison High School teacher: “OMG. I get pink sparkles. You get gold sequins. xxxx need turquoise rhinestones. I’m not sure about a gun, but I can so rock a taze. Xxxx can get me one!”
Polk Elementary teacher: “I could have talked with you girls for hours!!!”
DeHaven confirmed the postings involved school personnel and the statement were brought to his attention by school board member James Vanderlin, the father-in-law of Kincaid.
Follow Carole Carlson on Twitter, @ccwriterPT.