Crime

Fruitland High principal under investigation by police, district superintendent filling in

Fruitland head coach Mike Fitch talks to his players during the second half of the 3A state championship against Parma in Nampa, Idaho, on Saturday, March 5, 2016. Parma won 56-47.
Fruitland head coach Mike Fitch talks to his players during the second half of the 3A state championship against Parma in Nampa, Idaho, on Saturday, March 5, 2016. Parma won 56-47. AP

Fruitland High School Principal Mike Fitch is the subject of “an active investigation,” according to Idaho State Police spokesman Tim Marsano.

ISP declined to expand on what Fitch was being investigated for, or when the investigation started. Marsano said on Tuesday that no charges have been filed, and Fitch has not been arrested.

Multiple messages left by the Idaho Statesman for Fruitland School District Superintendent Teresa Fabricius this week were not returned.

The district did email the Statesman a statement.

“The Fruitland School District has received multiple reports and requests for information over the last couple of days regarding the leadership at Fruitland High School,” the statement read. “We want to take this opportunity to assure students, parents, patrons and staff that we are following standard district protocols related to what is a pending personnel issue.”

The statement did not expand on what kind of “personnel issue” it was about, nor did it specify the issue was about Fitch directly.

“While we cannot discuss details of personnel matters, Superintendent Teresa Fabricius is acting as administrator of Fruitland High School during this time,” according to the written statement. “The well-being of our students and staff is of the utmost importance to us as we work through this matter.”

Fabricius did not respond to an email asking if the statement was referencing Fitch and if Fitch was out of the office on leave while she was “acting as administrator.”

This year would have been Fitch’s 20th season as Fruitland’s head boys basketball coach. It was unclear Tuesday if he would continue to coach this season.

Fitch has led Fruitland to four state boys basketball titles, including last season’s 3A title. He’s tied for the seventh most championships by a boys basketball coach in state history.

Fitch was elected Idaho’s 3A boys basketball coach of the year last season by the classification’s coaches after leading the Grizzlies to a 21-4 record and a state title.


This is a developing story. Watch for updates as further details are confirmed.


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