Waterville principal Reiter: ‘I positively repudiate a allegation’

November 8, 2015 - photo frame

WATERVILLE — Don Reiter pronounced no matter what a outcome of his open conference starting Tuesday before a Board of Education, his once-unblemished repute as an teacher and propagandize director is perpetually tainted.

The principal of Waterville Senior High School was placed on paid executive leave some-more than dual months ago for reasons no one will reveal, and both propagandize officials and military have investigated allegations opposite him.

Attorney Gregg Frame, left, and his client, Waterville Senior High School Principal Don Reiter, pronounce with a Morning Sentinel about Reiter’s arriving open conference with a Board of Education over possibly he should be discharged from his job.

Waterville Senior High School Principal Don Reiter speaks with a Morning Sentinel about his arriving open conference with a Board of Education over possibly he should be discharged from his job.


Aug. 26, 2015: Students in kindergarten by class six, as good as ninth grade, start a propagandize year in Alternative Organizational Structure 92, that includes Waterville, Winslow and Vassalboro schools.

Aug. 27: School year starts for all other students in AOS 92. Superintendent Eric Haley learns of allegations opposite Waterville Senior High School principal Don Reiter.

Aug. 31: Haley calls Reiter to forewarn him he is being placed on paid executive leave. Haley starts an in-house investigation.

Sept. 1: Haley places Reiter on paid executive leave.

Sept. 2: Haley notifies a Waterville Police Department of allegations opposite Reiter.

Sept. 4: Haley tells Waterville Senior High School’s expertise and staff that Reiter is on executive leave and that partner principal Brian Laramee will be behaving principal. Haley sends an central leave presentation minute to Reiter around overnight U.S. Postal Service to Reiter’s Mount Vernon home.

Sept. 5: Haley says he and Assistant Superintendent Peter Thiboutot are conducting an inner investigation. Waterville military Chief Joseph Massey says military are conducting a apart investigation. Reiter’s attorney, Gregg Frame, says he and Reiter are concerned to pronounce with Haley to know given Reiter has been placed on leave.

Sept 8: Frame indicates a allegations opposite Reiter have to do with another person. Reiter and Frame accommodate with Haley and Thiboutot and a school’s attorney, Melissa Hewey, during Hewey’s Portland office. Frame says he entirely expects Reiter will be returned to propagandize soon.

Sept. 10: Haley says high propagandize teachers, secretaries and other staff support members are among those interviewed in a propagandize investigation.

Sept. 15: Reiter’s wife, Terri, files for divorce.

Sept. 25: Waterville military send their recommendation in a box to District Attorney Maeghan Maloney.

Oct 7: Haley recommends to Board of Education that Reiter be discharged from his job.

Oct. 19: A open exclusion conference for Reiter is scheduled for Nov. 10; Frame says Reiter wants a conference to be public.

Nov. 2: Maloney says she will wait to announce a preference in a Reiter military review until after a Nov. 10 conference before a School Board.


Reiter, vocalization for a initial time in an disdainful pronounce with a Morning Sentinel this past week, pronounced he has zero to hide.

“I can contend that we positively repudiate a claim and did not do anything wrong,” Reiter said.

His attorney, Gregg Frame, pronounced a allegations are formed on a communication, rather than an event. He and Reiter are austere Reiter should be returned to his job.

Frame, of a Portland law organisation Taylor, McCormack and Frame, pronounced he is assured Reiter will contend his pursuit as principal; though if he is dismissed, they will seductiveness within 30 days. There is no reason Reiter should be disciplined, let alone dismissed, according to Frame, who pronounced he harbors no doubts about his client’s innocence.

“The impulse we met with Don, that was never an choice given of how he comported himself with me and my really forked questions,” Frame said. “I had no doubt from a outset.”

School Superintendent Eric Haley and Assistant Superintendent Peter Thiboutot conducted an in-house propagandize investigation after Haley placed him on paid leave. They interviewed about 20 high propagandize teachers and staff members, and Haley reported a box to police.

Haley and Thiboutot’s attorney, Melissa Hewey, of Drummond Woodsum, also of Portland, pronounced no one wins in this case, that is formidable for everybody — students and propagandize employees, administrators and others.

“I don’t see this as a matter of prevailing,” Hewey said. “Bringing this worker to a residence for stop is a preference a superintendent and partner superintendent agonized about for a prolonged time, and so it’s not about winning or losing. It’s about carrying a residence hear what happened and determining what they cruise is in a best seductiveness of a kids during Waterville Senior High School.”

Haley pronounced he did not take a preference to suggest exclusion lightly.

“I can tell we it’s a hardest preference I’ve ever had to make as a superintendent,” he said.

Whatever a outcome, Reiter said, he has mislaid not usually his possibility for career enrichment given of a situation, though he also has spent thousands of dollars in attorney’s fees to urge his position.

Reiter, 44, earns about $102,000 a year.

Probably a many harmful detriment has been that of his family. Reiter’s wife, Terri, filed for divorce dual weeks after he was placed on leave Sept. 1.

“Our matrimony couldn’t withstand a implausible highlight that a fallout from this claim has caused,” pronounced Reiter, of Mount Vernon. “It has cost us a matrimony and it is costing a 7-year-old daughter a usually family she has ever known.”

He pronounced his divorce has zero to do with a allegations and he has attempted to strengthen his family from a fallout. Reiter’s mother is on Frame’s list of witnesses and could attest in support of her husband, nonetheless Reiter and Frame do not know possibly she will.

Reiter, looking sleepy and thinner than he was a few months ago, pronounced “it’s been a really anxiety-inducing process.”

“I have mislaid a ability to eat and nap as good and as frequently as we used to,” he said. “I mislaid 30 pounds in a initial month of leave.”

Reiter and Frame pronounced they could not plead a claim or whom it involves, as they trust Reiter will be returned to his pursuit and are wakeful of trusted crew and tyro matters.

Frame and Reiter, in vocalization with a Morning Sentinel, pronounced they wanted a possibility to pronounce about Reiter’s knowledge as an teacher and send a abyss of angst and misunderstanding a allegations have caused him.

“Don’s repute has been cracked by this — only by a indictment — and so we cruise it is critical that people get a possibility to see who he is,” Frame said.

The Waterville Police Department conducted a apart investigation, forwarded a news to a District Attorney’s Office, and District Attorney Maeghan Maloney says her bureau will not make a firmness in a box until after a open conference before a Board of Education. Haley has endorsed to a residence that Reiter be discharged from his job.

That residence will reason a conference during 6 p.m. Tuesday in a gymnasium during George J. Mitchell School on Drummond Avenue to come to a possess findings. Both Haley and Frame pronounced primarily they trust a conference will need some-more than one event to complete. On Saturday, Frame pronounced many of a conference Tuesday will be in executive, or private, session, and that a second partial of a conference will be hold from 1 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, mostly open to a public.

Commonly in cases such as this, a indicted does not quarrel a allegation, quite in a open venue, though Reiter wanted a conference open.

“I wish a open conference given we have zero to censor and we cruise all should be out there,” Reiter said.


Reiter pronounced he initial got breeze an claim had been finished opposite him on Friday, Aug. 28 — a second day of school.

Haley called Reiter a following Monday, Aug. 31, to forewarn him he would be placed on paid executive leave a following day. Since then, Reiter has been bustling assembly with attorneys and scheming for whatever is to come.

If, formed on a evidence, a Board of Education earnings him to his job, afterwards he will go behind to work and continue on. But he has been cleaning his residence and organizing and creation some teenager improvements — only in case, he said.

“If we am not behind during work and don’t have a job, I’ll have to sell my house,” he said.

Reiter pronounced people have asked him what he has been doing a final dual months, and he has been a lot busier than he expected.

“Fighting for my pursuit is flattering many a pursuit in and of itself, and that has taken a good understanding of time as well,” he said.

A lot of expertise members during a high propagandize support him, he said. He pronounced he believes a expertise was told, during minimum, not to plead a box with him and presumably not to have hit with him. While few have called him, he has perceived several content messages and cards in a mail expressing support, he said.

“I’ve got a good staff and I’ve been advantageous in that,” he said.

Haley pronounced he did not tell a expertise not to hit Reiter.

“I told a expertise that anything they contend could meant they’d be called in as a declare if this goes to a hearing,” Haley said. “At no time did we contend they couldn’t pronounce to him.”

Reiter, asked possibly he thinks he could have finished things differently in tie with a allegation, pronounced that, in hindsight, there are many things one could change “to stop a conditions from function after we know what has happened.”

“Sure, there are things we could have finished and positively will do, in destiny practice, to equivocate situations like this,” he said.

Asked possibly a open will learn what a allegations are during a hearing, Frame declined to answer. Because divulgence a allegations would exhibit trusted information, it is expected a accurate inlet of a allegations will not be finished known, according to Frame. But a open will expected infer “a ton” from conference a questions that are asked of witnesses, he said.

In what Frame terms “some procedural unfairness,” police, who will attest during a hearing, have not responded to his countless requests for information in a case, nonetheless propagandize officials have oral with police, he said. Frame pronounced he was, however, means to obtain from a propagandize a video of an pronounce military had with Reiter’s accuser.

He pronounced he does not know given military forwarded their news of a review to a district attorney’s office.

“I don’t cruise this deserved serve care over a propagandize investigation,” he said.

Waterville military Chief Joseph Massey pronounced military do not plead a rapist review with a chairman being investigated.

“It doesn’t make clarity for us to do that,” Massey said. “However, all of a reports and all justification that we collect in a sold rapist investigation, a suspect always has entrance to that, by discovery.”

Massey pronounced he anticipates his officers will be called to attest during Reiter’s hearing.

Reiter pronounced it has been some-more than dual months given a review started and he stays in a dim about a lot of things.

“It’s been a process,” he said. “There’s a lot we didn’t know when we got that call (from Haley). There’s still some things we don’t know, though we know some-more now.”

A lot of witnesses are lined adult to pronounce about Reiter’s character, according to Frame.

“I’ve had a burden, though also a luxury, of interviewing about 20-plus people from a school, and we can tell we that each one of them shares a enterprise that he be behind in propagandize as shortly as possible,” he said. “Not a singular chairman we spoke to spoke feeble of Don’s care and character.”


If Reiter goes behind to work, he said, he would work to correct “a jot of trust” that has been mislaid between him and Haley and Thiboutot.

He worked closely and good with Haley and Thiboutot for 8 years, though when Haley called him to try to establish a sincerity of a claim opposite him, all changed, according to Reiter.

Reiter pronounced he felt Haley overlooked a attribute Reiter had determined as a fair, efficient and only director in his years of use and loyalty to a district, as good as his obvious probity and integrity.

Reiter pronounced he understands Haley had no choice though to control an investigation, though with a miss of constrained information, he thinks Haley also would have to demeanour during Reiter’s lane record.

Haley reliable he and Reiter had a good attribute before a allegation. Reiter was hired in 2007 when a Board of Education voted 7-0 to approve a recommendation by Haley and a hunt cabinet to sinecure him.

“Don and we did have a good, plain operative relationship,” Haley said, though he declined to criticism further.

Reiter pronounced that if he is returned to his job, he will be means to work with Haley and Thiboutot to whatever border probable to work a high propagandize smoothly. “That’s going to happen, regardless of anything else,” Reiter said.

He pronounced if he gets his pursuit back, he will stay during a school: “I have a good pursuit during Waterville and a good staff and tyro body. If we get this pursuit back, we don’t devise on going anywhere.”

Asked how he would try to correct a mislaid trust and how he would pierce brazen in his position, Reiter pronounced he would take it as it comes, as it will be a altered atmosphere. The fact that a lot of staff members are understanding of him as an director will be a certain start in returning and perplexing to get things behind to normal, he said.

“I cruise there are some relations that will take longer to heal, and some that would change,” he said.

And if he loses his job?

“I’m not exclusively wealthy, so I’d positively have to get another job,” he said.

Frame pronounced when an claim is finished opposite a open official, that chairman is mostly seen as guilty by accusation. No matter what comes out of a hearing, there is a certain race that will cruise Reiter guilty no matter what — and that is a many frustrating partial of a case, he said.

But Frame thinks a fact that a military review took so prolonged and no charges have been filed is a good sign. The profession pronounced he searched for a smoking gun and “turned over each leaf” for some-more than 60 days of operative on a case.

“Sometimes a simplest answer is a one that’s right in front of you,” Frame said. “There’s zero here.”

As to how he would make his box to a Board of Education, Frame pronounced a pivotal for him is that a residence goes into a conference with an open mind. Board members will be presented with a lot of story from before and after a allegations, he said.

“It’s my wish they’ll cruise all a evidence. we cruise they will, and in weighing that, we don’t have many doubt that Don will be back.”

Asked if a outcome could have incomparable ramifications over Reiter’s possess situation, Frame pronounced that is possible.

“This box has a intensity to emanate some widespread fashion in Maine, possibly good or bad, on how these cases are handled,” he said.

Amy Calder — 861-9247

[email protected]

Twitter: @AmyCalder17





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