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Quartzsite, Arizona

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Ehrenberg teacher arrested for sex crimes

Blythe, CA
Riverside County Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement (SAFE) Task Force, arrested Russell A. Williams, 45, a teacher at Ehrenberg Elementary School, on July 17, 2013. Williams, of Blythe, Calif., is facing Felony charges of lewd or lascivious acts with a minor under 14  and sending/possessing obscene matter.

Williams is the focus of a 
Special Meeting of the Quartzsite Elementary School 
(QES) District 4 Board tomorrow July 25, at 8 am
in Ehrenberg Elementary School. 

The board will decide to terminate Williams, as he allegedly violated A.R.S 15-550. “Unprofessional conduct of a teacher”.

Apparently Williams did not immediately report the arrest or charge to his supervisor, Jacque Price, QES Superintendent. School policy states an employee of the school "who is arrested for or charged with any nonappealable offense listed in ARS. 41-1758.03 (B) AND who does not immediately report the arrest or charge to the person's supervisor is guilty of unprofessional conduct and the person shall be immediately dismissed from employment..."

Williams taught 5th grade last year at the Ehrenberg School, according to Price. She stated, "He's been teaching long before I arrived and was dedicated to his students." 

When asked if there had been prior complaints, Price said, "every teacher has complaints, but there was no particular complaints of this nature."

The agenda appeared on the QES website, but parents complained of not seeing the posting in the usual locations in Quartzsite. Price told Desert Messenger she is short staffed at the present, so didn't post the "courtesy notice" of tomorrow's meeting agenda in Quartzsite as usual. She said she is only required to post the agenda on the school's website, which she said met the requirement of posting within 24 hours of the scheduled meeting.

UPDATE: QES Press Release issued Friday, July 26th:

During an open meeting held on Thursday, July 25, 2013, the Quartzsite Elementary School Governing Board voted to terminate  Ehrenberg Elementary School teacher, Russell A. Williams, after finding he was in violation of A.R.S. §15-550 and Governing Board policy GBEB. Mr. Williams was arrested on July 17, 2013, and failed to immediately contact his supervisor to notify her of the arrest.

If you have information regarding Mr. Williams, you may contact the Riverside County District Attorney's Office by calling 951-955-5400 or toll-free at 888-374-1235.  You may also contact Superintendent Jacque Price at 928-923-7900 or the La Paz County Sheriff's Office at 928-669-9560.  


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