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Two teachers at Hammond private high school under investigation

Two staff members at a private high school in northwest Indiana are under investigation for “inappropriate communications” with students, according to police.

About 1 p.m. Thursday, police were called to Bishop Noll High School at 1519 Hoffman St. in Hammond regarding a teacher who had allegedly been conducting inappropriate communications with a female student, Hammond Police Lt. Richard Hoyda said.

The student reported that she was having conversations with the teacher, a 33-year-old man, via text and Facebook, Hoyda said. The student decided the communications were inappropriate and notified another teacher at the school, who decided that police should be contacted.

Two additional reports were then filed at Bishop Noll regarding a second staff member who is a former athletic coach and current teacher.

The first reported involved inappropriate communications between the then-coach and a female student from January 2015, Hoyda said. The second involves the same man, who is now a teacher, who allegedly sent inappropriate communications about three months ago to a female student.

That teacher is believed to have been relieved of duties as of Friday afternoon, Hoyda said. A spokeswoman for the Diocese of Gary, which operates the school, did not confirm that the teacher had been fired Monday morning.

According to a statement from the diocese, the faculty member may be a victim of account hacking, but the investigation is in the early stages.

“We ask for your understanding and expectation of privacy during this investigation. We are doing our best to protect everyone who may be a victim in this situation. As always, please know the safety of all of our students is of the utmost importance and at no time was any student, faculty or staff member in danger,” according to the statement from the Diocese of Gary.

“Also, as we have asked in the past, please do not perpetuate unfounded rumors without knowing the facts. Already, we have seen numerous falsehoods spread on social media,” according to the statement.

Both cases remain under investigation and no charges have been filed, Hoyda said. Anyone with information is asked to contact Sgt. Chris Matonovich at (219) 852-2963 or Sgt. Mark Biller at (219) 852-2966.