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Published: Saturday, 10/11/2008

Suspended principal in Perrysburg charged

BY CARL RYAN
BLADE STAFF WRITER
Calvin Calvin
SIMMONS / BLADE Enlarge

Patrick Calvin, the Perrysburg Junior High School principal who is in the process of being fired for allegedly violating the school district's money-handling policy, was arrested yesterday and charged with one count of theft in office.

During an arraignment in Perrysburg Municipal Court, Judge S. Dwight Osterud scheduled a preliminary hearing for 8:30 a.m. Nov. 6 and released Mr. Calvin on his own recognizance.

Mr. Calvin, 44, is accused of stealing $2,197.86 from various accounts at the junior high, according to court records. The penalty for conviction on the charge a fourth-degree felony is six to 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine.

The Perrysburg Board of Education began termination proceedings against Mr. Calvin in early August, but that process was put on hold when he filed an appeal with the Ohio Department of Education. He has been suspended without pay or benefits from his position, which has an annual salary of almost $101,500.

School officials emphasized that they were not accusing him of theft but of violating policy by not depositing funds within 24 hours of receiving them, as the district required, and of sloppy practices that left what was believed to be thousands of dollars unaccounted for.

According to a report filed with Perrysburg police on Aug. 26, the Ohio Auditor's Office determined money was missing from several accounts at the junior high.

Money the school district couldn't account for included about $829 in damaged book fines collected from students at the end of the 2006-2007 school year, an $800 purchase order for gift cards in 2006 for which the recipients were not documented, and the inclusion in an athletic department purchase order of a $155 pair of shoes for personal use.

Mr. Calvin wrote a $1,934 check to reconcile 'all items connected to my name,' according to district documents.

A hearing on Mr. Calvin's appeal of his termination has been scheduled for Oct. 29-30, district Treasurer Matt Feasel said.

School officials declined comment on Mr. Calvin's arrest.

Mr. Calvin could not be reached for comment last night.

He was junior high assistant principal from 1998 to 2000, when he became principal.

Mr. Calvin would be in the second year of a two-year contract.

He is the third school official in northwest Ohio in recent months to be accused of theft.

A former Cardinal Stritch High School football coach accused of diverting school funds was indicted earlier this month by a Lucas County grand jury.

Andre Hampton, 28, who has denied the accusations, was fired from his coaching position in August when bank representatives contacted the school.

He was named coach in January.

The indictments included counts of tampering with records, falsification in a theft offense, forgery, and theft.

In a police report, the school's president, the Rev. David Reinhart, accused Mr. Hampton of opening a bank account in the school's name without permission and transferring school money into the account for personal use.

In the Clyde-Green Springs Exempted Village school district, the board last month

unanimously accepted the resignation of Superintendent Todd Helms, who board President Tom Conley said then was being investigated for embezzling more than $26,000 from the school district since 2005.

Officials said Mr. Helms created a fictitious firm, GTR Enterprises, and since 2005 had been 'ordering' repair parts, supplies, and services from the company, signing his own purchase orders indicating he'd received the parts, and sending checks from the school district to pay for the parts to GTR's undisclosed bank account.

Contact Carl Ryan at: carlryan@theblade.com or 419-206-0356.



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