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Attorneys move case of teacher feeding puppy to turtle due to ‘conflict of interest’

Posted at 4:03 PM, Mar 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-13 19:35:32-04

PRESTON, Idaho – A prosecuting attorney in Idaho’s Franklin County announced Tuesday that his office would not be conducting an investigation into the case of a teacher feeding a puppy to a snapping turtle due to a conflict of interest.

Witnesses say Robert Crosland, a science teacher at Preston Junior High fed a live puppy to a snapping turtle in front of students.

“Due to a conflict of interest, my office has enlisted the help of a prosecuting attorney in the 6th Judicial District,” attorney Vic A Pearson wrote. “The reports have been turned over to him for his review and determination on today’s date.”

Pearson asked for the public’s patience as they investigated the incident:

“There has been a considerable amount of public reaction regarding the allegations being made. I understand the reaction of the public regarding this incident but would ask for some patience at this point in time. Such delays are not uncommon to ensure we have met legal and ethical standards required by the criminal justice system. However, the volume of calls being received by both law enforcement and my office is hindering our ability to complete what needs to be done to reach the end goal of justice in this case.”

Preston School District Superintendent, Mark Gee, says Mr. Crossland is still employed at Preston Junior High and while the incident is under investigation, he’s not been placed on administrative leave.

“District administration was made aware of the issue soon after it occurred and immediately began the process of investigation and taking steps to ensure that this type of action could not be repeated,” Idaho’s Preston School District said Monday. ” A part of any investigation includes determining the best course of action once the facts of the matter have been ascertained.”