The Valley News has been selected to add two journalists — a photojournalist and a climate and environment reporter — to our newsroom through Report for America, a national service program that boosts local news by harnessing community support.

Please consider donating to this effort.

Police: SAU alarm that summoned police was ‘personnel issue’

  • Keith Pfeifer

Valley News Correspondent
Published: 2/18/2019 10:29:52 PM
Modified: 2/18/2019 10:29:54 PM

CLAREMONT — SAU 6 officials are declining to discuss the circumstances surrounding an incident at the administrative offices that occurred last Wednesday and required a police response for about an hour.

Police Chief Mark Chase referred all questions about the names of those involved to the SAU. Chase did say there was “no crime, no arrest and there is no ongoing investigation” into the matter.

Chase said the incident began a little after 3 p.m. on Feb. 13 when the police department responded to a “special ed panic alarm,” which he described as a button that summons a police response.

Such alarms are common in banks, where a teller would push one in the event of a robbery.

“We had two officers respond not knowing the issue, and they determined there was no emergency,” Chase said. “We stayed at the Dow Building (on Broad Street) as a civil standby while they dealt with a personnel issue.”

Chase said the officers left the scene about 4:30 p.m.

Asked whether someone was removed from the building by police, Chase only said a person left, declining to give a name.

“That has to come from the SAU office,” the chief said. “The personnel issue ended because one of the persons left voluntarily.”

Interim Superintendent Keith Pfeifer, hired last summer following the ouster of Middleton McGoodwin, on Sunday told a Valley News reporter, “right now I can’t comment,” though he made a point of saying he was still employed with the district.

Pfeifer was not in his SAU 6 office on Monday and a message left for him at home was not immediately returned. The offices were open despite the holiday.

On Sunday, Claremont School Board Chairman Frank Sprague said Wednesday’s event was a personnel issue and declined comment.

SAU 6 Chairwoman Marjorie Erickson, of Unity, also declined to provide any specifics.

“All I can tell you regarding the issue you’ve asked about is that it is a personnel matter and therefore nothing that can be discussed. There will be no further comments on the topic,” Erickson said in an email.

Patrick O’Grady can be reached at

Valley News

24 Interchange Drive
West Lebanon, NH 03784


© 2020 Valley News
Terms & Conditions - Privacy Policy