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New details emerge in John Clark arrest

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Posted at 11:10 AM, Jan 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-29 13:10:11-05

New details have emerged relating to the arrest of a Mountain Home middle school principal for sexual abuse charges.

A Probable Cause Affidavit obtained Friday by Idaho On Your Side, highlights the claims of sexual abuse against John Clark of Mountain Home.

Clark was arrested on Friday, January 22nd after a female victim contacted a counselor about allegations of sexual abuse.

The Probable Cause Affidavit details Clark would act in ways the victim told police made her feel “uncomfortable and ... weird,” including lying closely alongside her in bed (commonly known as “spooning”) and playing with her ears.

In addition, the victim told police that Clark would play a game called “Wooling,” in which he would reportedly pinch her stomach, tickle her armpits, and smell, tickle and bite her ears. The victim told an investigators Clark would also “rest his head on her chest, making her feel uncomfortable because his head was resting on or near (her) breasts.”

The victim told Clark she did not like the game, and stated Clark told her if she refused, she would get in trouble.

The victim also told police that Clark “would try to remove her shirt and pants.”

According to the document, Clark admitted to police “to getting in bed” with the victim, but did not think he “had an erection while in bed.”

The victim said the most recent act reportedly occurred January 13th.

Clark was the principal of Hacker Middle School in Elmore County and, although his victim was a not student, the school district released this statement following his arrest.

Dear Parents and Guardians,

As many of you may or may not know, the Principal of Hacker Middle School was arrested Friday evening.  While the district normally doesn’t publically address personnel matters, due to the severity of these allegations, we feel it is important to reassure our parents that the safety of your children is our top priority. 

We want to inform parents that this incident did not involve any Hacker students or happen on school grounds.  The principal is no longer in the building and has been placed on administrative leave by the district.  While we know there may be many questions regarding this situation, the district is limited on the information that can be provided, as this is a personnel and criminal matter.

As we move forward, we want to assure you that we have a plan in place to address the needs of students and staff at Hacker Middle School.

Respectfully,

James Gilbert, Superintendent

Clark made his initial court appearance on January 25th and is expected to later plead not guilty.

Clark’s attorney, Scott McKay, has said that the accusations are untrue and said that the actions committed were consistent with “horseplay.”

The judge set a $25,000 bond.

Clark has since been placed on administrative leave from Hacker Middle School and is scheduled to appear in court on February 12th.