CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Chicopee Superintendent Lynn Clark was been placed on paid administrative leave by the Chicopee School Committee after her arrest Wednesday.
Clark is accused of sending dozens of threatening messages to someone who applied for the chief of police job in Chicopee. According to a complaint filed in federal court, Clark sent the messages because she felt if the candidate was hired as the chief, it would negatively impact her position as superintendent of schools.
Chicopee Mayor John Vieau said the actions of one person do not define the city.
“We are going to continue to move forward to make sure we are providing top-notch education to our students and making sure the faculty are supported, as well. Our goal is to continue to move forward,” Vieau said.
Mayor Vieau also explained why Clark was placed on paid leave rather than unpaid leave.
“We would have to allow 48-hours notice if we were going to talk about someone and potential discipline of an employee,” Vieau said. “They would have that right to be there and we would have to give a 48-hour notice. That’s compliant with open meeting laws. We weren’t able to do that, so we did it in an open session. These are accusations. Right now, there hasn’t been an indictment as far as I know. If that happens, we can act accordingly.”
Assistant superintendent Alvin Morton will now be the district’s acting superintendent. Clark was released from federal custody on standard conditions after a hearing in federal court in Springfield on Wednesday, according to a spokesperson for the Department of Justice. She also cannot have contact with certain individuals, cannot drink alcohol to excess, and must report to Pretrial Services as directed.
As for the search for a police chief, the city is interviewing two candidates this week.