Police reviewing hundreds of hours of video in Springboro PE teacher case

Published: Tuesday, March 19, 2019 @ 7:57 PM

Police review hundreds of hours of video in Springboro PE teacher case

Police, school administrators and detectives have spent more than 500 hours reviewing video of a former Springboro PE teacher's classroom and work area interactions with children as part of the investigation into claims of misconduct involving the teacher.

>> Ex-Springboro PE teacher leaves 2nd job amid investigation

Former PE teacher John Austin Hopkins resigned from Springboro Community City Schools on March 12 after the district announced that he was the focus of an investigation of claims he was engaged in inappropriate conduct with a student. 

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Hopkins has not been charged with any crime. He is not allowed on any school property. 

Tuesday afternoon, Springboro Police Chief Jeffrey Kruithoff issued an update on the investigation that dealt with the review of video. 

"When a student is seen physically interacting with Mr. Hopkins in any manner, the investigators are identifying the student and contacting the parents," Kruithoff said in the statement. "Parents are being allowed to review the video involving their child and then being offered the opportunity to have their child interviewed," he said. 

The interviews are being performed by trained investigators with the Child Advocacy Center of Warren County. Springboro police detectives are observing those interviews. 

"It is anticipated that this process will continue for a number of week," Kruithoff said. 

The video review, which goes back into 2018, is being done by Springboro detectives, school administrators, Warren County Sheriff's detectives, several other officers on injury leave or from adjacent agencies who have been assigned to help in the Hopkins investigation, the chief said. 

Investigators are anticipating that the review will be completed this week, he said. 

Kruithoff said parents have been given suggested guidelines and talking points to help them talk with their child if the child tells them something happened that made them feel uncomfortable. 

The chief also is encouraging parents to contact Springboro police if they believe their child is suffering effects from contact with Hopkins. 

Once police complete their investigation, the chief said, the case will be turned over to the Warren County Prosecutor's Office for any determination of criminal charges. 

Kruithoff said that hand off is anticipated to occur in late April.