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Newport Beach teacher investigated in battery case, officials say

June 11, 2013|By Annie Kim and John Canalis

A teacher at Corona del Mar High School in Newport Beach is under investigation following a physical altercation with a student, officials said Tuesday.

Newport Beach police are investigating an allegation of battery between a teacher and a minor, police spokeswoman Jennifer Manzella said. She declined to elaborate on which of the two was the victim.

The alleged conflict was not sexual in nature and did not involve weapons, Manzella said.

Though police declined to release the names of those involved, the Newport-Mesa Unified School District released a statement that drama teacher Ron Martin was under investigation by police and placed on leave.

The district is "cooperating fully" with the police, district spokeswoman Laura Boss said. "No further information can be shared at this time," Boss said in an email. "N-MUSD employees are entitled to a right of privacy and due process under state personnel laws. The district is committed to observing these rights for all employees."

Martin was involved a controversial staging of the play "Rent" at the school in 2009. Some parents had deemed the play's subject matter, including prostitution and homosexuality, inappropriate for students to perform.

Though it could not be determined whether it had to do with the play, Martin was placed on administrative leave in October 2009 but later returned to work. Boss, at the time, said the leave was tied to a "personnel matter."

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john.canalis@latimes.com

Twitter: @johncanalis

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