Investigations of SMUSD Board Member Continue

Officials are withholding comment on a pair of investigations into a member of the San Marino Unified School District Board of Education other than to acknowledge those investigations are ongoing.
A third-party investigative firm is handling a misconduct investigation into board member Chris Norgaard on behalf of the school district, according to a statement made last week. That statement qualified the misconduct as sexual harassment.
The San Marino Police Department launched its own investigation after the school district contacted the agency about its investigation on Jan. 19. In a news release, the police labeled it a battery investigation.
Norgaard denies any wrongdoing and said he does not know specifically what the investigations are about.
“I have received a number of emails, voice mails, text messages, regular mail, etc. from people, all of which have been supportive, which has been very heartening,” Norgaard said in a phone interview on Tuesday. “It’s been from a wide variety of people.”
Citing the nature of the investigation, Superintendent Alex Cherniss declined to comment further. Board President Shelley Ryan also declined to comment this week.
Police Chief John Incontro also withheld comment regarding his department’s investigation.
During the investigation so far, Norgaard has attended one Board of Education meeting, during which a controversial resolution to call a bond election was introduced. Norgaard said he is unsure whether he will attend the Feb. 13 meeting because he isn’t sure that item will be pushed forward just yet.
“If it is on the agenda, particularly as an action item, I am inclined to attend at least the open session,” Norgaard said.

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