After a school administrator was charged with driving with a high blood-alcohol level, leading police on a high speed chase, and trying to get out of trouble by invoking the name of the school superintendent, the superintendent has issued a statement.
John Thompson is the athletic director at Parchment High School and a middle school assistant principal. Earlier this month, police say he led a chase where he drove more than 120 miles per hour.
A police report shows Thompson, 41, told police he was with his Superintendent Matt Miller earlier in the night.
Richland Police Officer Bradley Wadell said he saw Thompson’s Cadillac speeding and in the wrong lane in the Richland area and when he tried to pull him over, the car sped up.
Police dash cam video shows that the Cadillac eventually stopped in the middle of the road, but the driver wouldn’t leave the car. They eventually pulled him out at gunpoint.
After a search warrant, a blood test at Borgess Hospital showed a blood alcohol level more than twice the legal limit.
Wednesday, it was learned through police reports that Thompson had allegedly tried to use the school superintendent's name multiple times to get out of trouble, saying that he could fix the situation.
In a statement Thursday, Superintendent Matthew Miller said:
"Following news coverage Wednesday concerning Parchment Middle School assistant principal and high school athletic director John Thompson, Parchment School District Superintendent Matthew J. Miller issued the following statement:
“On the night prior to John’s arrest, he and I went out to watch the women’s national championship basketball game on TV. We ate dinner; we talked; we watched the game. I was talking with others when I was told that John had left. A while later, I checked to see if his car was in the parking lot. It was not, so I got a ride back home from someone else.
“The next morning, I received a call from a reporter who said he had reason to believe a Parchment administrator had been arrested. His information was incorrect, but it was the first inkling I had that something was wrong. Up to that point, I had no reason to believe that John was in any trouble.
“My concern remains with the well-being of John Thompson.”
Thompson is facing charges of operating a motor vehicle while being intoxicated, operating a vehicle with a high blood alcohol content, fleeing and eluding police, and having an open intoxicant in a vehicle.
On April 23, Parchment schools placed Thompson on paid administrative leave, pending the judicial process and its outcome.
Miller said he would have no further comment at this time."