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Brewer principal hires attorney amid questions about his departure

BREWER, Maine — Principal David Wall spent part of Wednesday enjoying the sunshine from a lawn chair in his front yard in Dedham, instead of being behind his desk at Brewer High School.

Wall left his post late last week and has since hired an Auburn law firm to represent him. Details about the reason behind his departure have not been made public.

“I’m directing all questions to my attorney,” Wall said with two small dogs defending his ankles.

Wall hired Skelton Taintor & Abbott in Auburn.

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Attorney Rebecca Webber said Wednesday that Wall’s departure had nothing to do with the First Amendment or with any students, and it had everything to do with his interactions with Superintendent Cheri Towle.

“I think it’s a personality thing,” Webber said. “That is what I’m getting the gist of.”

Wall has not been fired, she said.

“To fire someone, they have to have a hearing,” Webber said. “I believe there is talk about having a hearing, but nothing is scheduled.”

Towle released a written statement on Tuesday, saying Wall was “out on leave” and on Wednesday said by email that a hearing has not been set.

“The School Committee has not scheduled any special meetings, but if and when it does, the media will be appropriately [notified], following our normal meeting notice procedures,” the superintendent said in an email.

School board and Brewer City Council members, the Police Department and City Manager Steve Bost have all received calls regarding Wall’s departure.

“There is only so long you can maintain silence on this,” the city manager said Tuesday. “The public needs to know what is going on.”

Public Safety Director Jason Moffitt said earlier this week that rumors Wall was escorted out of the school by police are not true. Moffitt added that his department does not have an investigation involving Wall.

School board Chairman Mark Farley said he could not provide any details about why Wall left. He referred all questions to Towle, who declined to provide any details.

“I understand that people may have questions about this, but please understand that neither I, nor anyone else authorized to speak for the School Department, can provide information about personnel issues — regardless of who the employee might be,” she said.

With employment issues, employers cannot discuss the reason behind any decisions until the end of the hearing.

“What can be announced is the final result,” Webber said.

The hearings are typically held behind closed doors, but Wall can request that the Brewer School Committee hold his hearing in public.

Webber said “he might” make that request.

“He’s got nothing to hide,” she said.


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