DA with­draws as­sault charges on head­mas­ter

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - FRONT PAGE - By Richard Il­gen­fritz ril­gen­fritz@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @rpil­gen­fritz on Twit­ter

The as­sault charges that were filed against The Haver­ford School head­mas­ter have been with­drawn.

The as­sault charges that were filed 10 days ago against the head­mas­ter of The Haver­ford School have been with­drawn, ac­cord­ing to a state­ment from the Delaware County District At­tor­ney’s Of­fice.

“In re­view­ing the case in its en­tirety, in­clud­ing af­fi­davits, wit­ness state­ments, ad­di­tional evidence and per­sonal in­ter­views, al­though there was prob­a­ble cause for po­lice to ef­fec­tu­ate this ar­rest, we be­lieve there is in­suf­fi­cient evidence to pro­ceed with the pros­e­cu­tion of this case. There­fore we are with­draw­ing the charge (sim­ple as­sault M3) filed Oct. 10, 2016 and clos­ing the file,” the state­ment sign by District At­tor­ney Jack Whe­lan read.

Nagl, 50, of Haver­ford, was sus­pended from his role as head­mas­ter of the school af­ter he was charged by Haver­ford po­lice in con­nec­tion with an al­leged as­sault of his son dur­ing an al­ter­ca­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to school of­fi­cials, the board will con­sider Nagl’s sta­tus with the school at its next meet­ing.

Ac­cord­ing to a state­ment is­sued Wed­nes­day morn­ing from Wil­liam C. Yoh, board chair­man of The Haver­ford School, “The Board of Trus­tees is sched­uled to meet early next week to fairly and de­lib­er­ately as­sess the sit­u­a­tion in light of this new de­vel­op­ment. We ap­pre­ci­ate our com­mu­nity’s con­tin­ued fo­cus on the well­be­ing of our boys and our shared re­spon­si­bil­ity of pre­par­ing boys for life.”

Ac­cord­ing to the crim­i­nal com­plaint filed by Haver­ford po­lice Oct. 10, of­fi­cers were called to the home on that date at 7:05 a.m. on the re­port of a do­mes­tic dis­tur­bance that oc­curred in the 500 block of Pan­mure Road in Haver­ford.

In the com­plaint, Nagl told ar­riv­ing of­fi­cers that on Oct. 8 he re­port­edly found mar­i­juana in his son’s back­pack so he took it, along with his son’s cell­phone. He also told his son that mar­i­juana was not per­mit­ted. On Oct. 10, he heard his son speak­ing on the phone so he went to get it from him. When his son re­fused, an al­ter­ca­tion be­tween the two be­gan. Ac­cord­ing to the crim­i­nal com­plaint, the son called po­lice.

“Nagl ad­mit­ted he put his son in a choke­hold to end the al­ter­ca­tion quickly,” ac­cord­ing to the com­plaint.

Po­lice said the son had vis­i­ble red marks on his chest below the neck­line. Fol­low­ing the charges, Nagl was re­leased on $30,000 un­se­cured bail.

Nagl and his at­tor­ney met with prose­cu­tors Wed­nes­day.

“We’re ob­vi­ously quite pleased that the District At­tor­ney’s Of­fice acted promptly and pro­fes­sion­ally and reached the same con­clu­sion that we have namely that our client did not com­mit a crime and was act­ing in the best in­ter­est of his child,” Robert Keller, Nagl’s at­tor­ney, said in a phone in­ter­view Thurs­day morn­ing.

Al­though the board will still have to take up the is­sue of Nagl’s sta­tus at the school, he is hope­ful Nagl would be able to re­turn to the school.

“It’s our client’s hope that he can re­turn to the school as soon as pos­si­ble and re­sume his po­si­tion as head­mas­ter and to con­tinue the good work that this school does in shap­ing the lives of young men,” Keller said.

Af­ter Nagl was charged with the as­sault, the school sent out a let­ter ad­dress­ing the is­sue and in­form­ing The Haver­ford School com­mu­nity that Nagl was be­ing placed on ad­min­is­tra­tive leave.

“The well-be­ing of our boys and our guid­ing prin­ci­ples of com­mu­nity re­main paramount. Dr. Nagl is fully co­op­er­at­ing with the school as we all nav­i­gate this dif­fi­cult sit­u­a­tion,” the let­ter read in part.

Nagl be­came the ninth head­mas­ter of The Haver­ford School in 2013. Ac­cord­ing to his bi­og­ra­phy on the school’s web­site, Nagl was a grad­u­ate of the United States Mil­i­tary Academy, Class of 1988. He was a vet­eran who served in both the First Gulf War and in Iraqi Free­dom dur­ing his Army ca­reer.

“It’s been very stress­ful and up­set­ting for our client as he’s at­tempt­ing to deal with the very per­sonal fam­ily is­sues and at the same time be­ing away from the school that he loves,” Keller said.

John Nagl

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