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Lake Forest Board Hires Ex-Prosecutor To Investigate ‘Sexting’ Case

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Deer Path Middle School principal John Steinert pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor harassment charge in 2009. (Credit: Gurnee Police)

Deer Path Middle School principal John Steinert pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor harassment charge in 2009. (Credit: Gurnee Police)

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LAKE FOREST (CBS) — The Lake Forest District 67 school board Tuesday night hired a former federal prosecutor to undertake an independent review of the way the board handled sexual harassment accusations made in 2009.

Schiff Hardin managing partner Ronald Safer was given three charges by the subcommittee headed by Board Vice President John Julian: To determine if existing District 67 policies were followed when the accusations against Deer Path Middle School Principal John Steinert were first made, whether those policies need revision and whether any wrongdoing occurred in the handling of the matter.

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Julian said that if Safer deems that change is needed, he will be expected to outline how to accomplish it.

Aside from that, Julian said the board has no intention of telling Safer what to do, who to interview and what to determine. Julian said the board expects Safer’s report by mid-January at the latest.

Steinert resigned Jan. 21, two years after he was convicted of misdemeanor harassment of a 22-year-old intern assigned to the school. He sent sexually explicit text messages, voice mails and a lewd photo.

A police student resource officer has been reassigned while the investigation takes place; sexual harassment accusations against the officer were made by the same intern.

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