Niagara Gazette

Crime

June 12, 2013

Principal placed on leave as investigation continues

Niagara Gazette — A Niagara Falls elementary school principal is on paid administrative leave while police investigate allegations of sexual misconduct made against him.

Falls School Superintendent Cynthia Bianco confirmed on Tuesday that Patrick Kuciewski, the principal at the 79th Street School was put on leave after being questioned on Monday by Falls police detectives.

Kuciewski was taken out of the school on Monday afternoon and brought to Falls police headquarters, where he was interviewed for an unknown amount of time. After the interview, Kuciewski was released and he has not been charged with any crime.

“Acting on a complaint, (we) did interview a Niagara Falls School District employee in regards to a allegation of sexual misconduct. The allegation alleges that the misconduct took place several years ago,” Police Superintendent Bryan DalPorto said. “This is an active police investigation and no further comment can be made at this time in regards to the investigation.”

DalPorto did say that the administrator was not taken into custody at the school or transported in handcuffs on Monday.

Sources tell the Gazette the allegations of sexual misconduct may date as far back as 15 years. Generally, the statute of limitations on crimes of that nature is 10 years.

School district attorney Angelo Massaro said the matter is also under investigation by the district. Massaro said the district would not comment further on what he called “a personnel issue.”

“There’s been some allegations made which the district is now reviewing and will be investigating,” Massaro said. “This matter has nothing to do with 79th Street School or the 79th Street School community. Until the investigation is complete, we are cannot comment any further.”

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