Police investigate allegations, clear suspended Plum teacher of criminal wrongdoing
The teacher who was acquitted of witness intimidation charges during the Plum High School sex scandal was cleared by police of criminal wrongdoing after an investigation of unspecified allegations made against him recently.
Drew Zoldak has been on paid leave since Feb. 28, his attorney said. Al Lindsay added he has not spoken with his client or received anything from the district about the allegations of policy violations that led to his suspension.
School board President Steve Schlauch said Zoldak would remain on paid leave while the district continues its investigation into the alleged violations. The internal investigation was ongoing.
Acting Superintendent Gail Yamnitzky would not comment beyond what she said in an announcement about the allegations posted on the district website the afternoon Zoldak was suspended.
“It was reported to administration and immediately reported to law enforcement,” Yamnitzky wrote. “Educating our children in a safe and secure environment remains our most important priority. Therefore, this report was acted upon swiftly and thoroughly. All of our campuses continue to maintain the highest levels of safety and security.”
Yamnitzky did not identify Zoldak or the nature of the violation. Plum police Chief Jeff Armstrong said investigation of the allegations against Zoldak were turned over to the Allegheny County Police Department.
“Based on our investigation to date, there is no indication of any criminal activity in this matter, nor will any criminal charges be filed at this time,” county police Superintendent Coleman McDonough said in a release March 1. “Our investigation is closed, and the matter has been referred back to Plum School District officials for their disposition.”
Armstrong was named in a civil rights lawsuit Zoldak filed against Plum borough and its police department after a jury in 2016 found him not guilty of charges that he intimidated a female student who had accused another teacher of having sex with her. That lawsuit is ongoing.