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School District Hires PR Firm in Wake of Triton Sex Scandal

Braithwaite Communications, of Philadelphia, handles media inquiries in wake of Camden County Prosecutor's Office announcement of five educators' arrests.

SOUTHERN NJ -- Black Horse Pike Regional School District (BHPRSD) has hired a Philadelphia public relations firm in the wake of a sex scandal at Triton Regional High School that saw three teachers and two administrators arrested Thursday.

The district hired Braithwaite Communications on Thursday to handle the "media barrage" it anticipated following Camden County Prosecutor Warren W. Faulk's announcement of the educators' arrests, Braithwaite account supervisor Sarah Lindsay said.

The terms of the agreement are not known at this time.

Three Triton teachers—Jeffrey Logandro, 32, Nicholas Martinelli, 28, and Daniel Michielli, 27—are charged with having sexual contact with now-former students during the 2011-12 school year.

According to investigation documents, Michielli had sexual intercourse with his victim, who was 17 years old at the time, during the school year, while Martinelli did not engage in sexual intercourse with his victim, who was 18 at the time, until after the girl had graduated from Triton.

Martinelli, who is only charged with second-degree official misconduct at this point, did admit he had "kissed victim and touched her intimate parts on multiple occasions during the school year," according to the records.

Several students chanted "Free Martinelli!" as they left the Runnemede school Thursday afternoon. The popular physical education teacher was the boys' soccer coach through the 2011 season.

According to the investigation records, Logandro never engaged in sexual intercourse with his victim, who was 17 years old at the time of the alleged contact, but he did admit to kissing her and touching her "intimate parts." The documents also note the 32-year-old math teacher and girls' track coach apologized to his victim's parents for kissing their daughter.

Triton principal Catherine DePaul, 55, and former vice principal Jernee Kollock, 39, are charged with second-degree official misconduct, as well as hindering an investigation—a disorderly persons offense. Both are accused of attempting to cover up allegations of teacher-student sex after a student went to a substitute teacher with the information in April.

Kollock became vice principal at Timber Creek Regional High School—also a BHPRSD school—on July 1, when she replaced a retiring vice principal. It is not yet known when the BHPRSD board approved the transfer.

"It's obvious there existed a culture at Triton High School whereby teachers thought they could get away with the relationships with their students, and administrators turned a blind eye to evidence of these relationships' existence," Faulk said.

Patch was unsuccessful in attempts to reach Logandro and Michielli, a math teacher and the Class of 2012 adviser, at their homes Friday afternoon.

All five educators have been suspended. The BHPRSD Board of Education next meets Thursday night at Timber Creek.

BHPRSD has not incurred any legal fees specific to the Triton sex investigation at this point, Lindsay said.

The investigation is ongoing, according to Faulk, who encourages any potential additional victims to contact Inv. Robin Morante at 856-225-8480.

For more on the Triton teacher-student sex charges, visit:

patti klinshaw October 12, 2012 at 03:49 AM
the administration helped fail the children, but i think the parents did too.
Marlene October 18, 2012 at 06:10 PM
I agree.The Sandusky case and the catholic priest cases were pedophiles who aggressively abused NUMEROUS boys over course of years. Those cases are not relevant to this scandal. It was a consensual sex fling with three girls who were girlfriends and 3 male teacher who happen to be mutual friends also.Neither the girls nor their parents pressed charges. It was an acceptable situation. I AM IN NO WAY CONDONING THE AFFAIR. Consensual sex among teenagers is nothing new and has only flared in recent years. Many high school girls dress, act and look like woman. The one teacher can only be charged with misconduct because his female partner just happened to be 18 but the other 2 teachers are criminally charged because their partners were NOT 18 YET. Those who are already trashing these three teachers should speak to students who will tell you they were GOOD teachers who gave extra tutoring and instilled confidence and hope. They were well liked and respected. They made the Big Mistake of not walking away and they are going to pay severely for that mistake. This is One More case however where people in authoritativeness positions are NOT doing their job. The principal and vice principal are being paid to make rightful decisions in the best interest of the students.These people do not deserve their jobs and should also lose their careers, their credentials. The principal should have put a stop to it and she didn't, so in my opinion, she just threw fuel on the fire.
Schu October 27, 2012 at 04:12 AM
I know it's been a few weeks since the sex scandal broke but I'm very interested in where this situation goes. The PR firm, the perv still getting paid and the principal covering it up. It's still a real story.
Hadenough January 15, 2013 at 02:25 PM
The five arrested - teachers, principle and vice principle are technically " STILL" employed !!!! They are still receiving a paycheck ... The board legally can't fire any of them until they are indicted or plead guilty which NONE have done yet. If they plead not guilty and move forward, if a grand jury finds them guilty, they automatically do at least 5 years in jail ! I hope they are found guilty and thrown in prison. Our justice system is one that gives time to those charged to decide how they will plea. Its a game of " chicken". 3 months is LONG ENOUGH to have them sitting around, collecting our money. ALL A GAME !! Its not a game to those families dealing with the aftermath of what occurred. For all those parents out there that put blame on the girls, SHAME ON YOU !! You wouldnt be blaming them if one of them were your daughter. There is something terribly wrong with people today. No one wants to take responsibilty for anything. No one wants to get involved. Its apalling how many people knew about this long before it hit the news. They did NOTHING!! Disgrace!! Our kids are not safe ANYWHERE!
Danny Griffoni March 01, 2013 at 03:46 PM
Scrappy dappy doo! I's does thinks we's be's gettins just a fine's edumications up in dis here tizownship!

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