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'We're devastated,' Snake River superintendent says

February 17, 2012

Counselors are available in the Snake River School District to help students and staff deal with the alleged actions of Christopher Cox, the Snake River Junior High principal who was arrested Wednesday afternoon. Cox has been charged with three felony counts of sexual abuse of a minor under 16 years old.
"We are all devastated," said Superintendent Russell Hammond. "A brief assembly was held at the junior high Thursday morning to explain to the students what we know."
"The kids are in shock but they are fairly resilient," Hammond said. "They are doing well under the circumstances of all that's transpired."
Before the school day started, school administrators had met with staff.
Wednesday evening, the school trustees voted to put Cox on paid administrative leave.
Trustees will meet next Wednesday for their February public school board meeting. After the public meeting, trustees will meet in executive session to make any further decision about Cox's employment, said Hammond.
The district is waiting on advice from its legal counsel.
Cox was first employed in the Snake River School District as a teacher in 2005. He became principal of the SRJH starting in 2010.
Administrative duties at the junior high will be handled by SRHS assistant principal Ray Carter and SR federal grant coordinator L.T. Erickson.
"These are things that reverberate not only in the school district but also throughout the state," said Hammond.

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