Jim Kozlowski, a Boulder High School teacher and coach for the golf team, was scheduled to report for the new academic year this Thursday. But not now, and for a reason that's flat-out bizarre.
Kozlowski is accused of slyly but intentionally exposing his genitals while visiting two separate garage sales this weekend.
Commander Jeff Satur, spokesman for the Longmont Police Department, has the strange details.
On Saturday morning, he says, Kozlowski was shopping at a garage sale when another person he identifies as "the first victim" noticed some odd behavior. In Satur's words, "the victim said the suspect knelt down near some clothes, with his right knee on the ground and his left knee bent, with his left foot on the ground. He asked the victim about the clothes, and then he pulled his shorts away from his leg with his left hand -- and he wasn't wearing any underwear. So his genitals were exposed through the left leg opening."
Could this have been an accident? Not in the view of the arresting officers. "We believe it was purposeful," Satur says.
From there, Kozlowski continued to another garage sale about a block away, where he encountered a person ID'd as "the second victim" by Satur. "She says his right knee was on the ground, his left knee was bent and his left foot was on the ground -- and his shorts were loose fitting above his knee. And when he squatted down, his genitals were completely exposed and visible through the left leg opening of the shorts."
The woman in question didn't think this action was as a result of a wardrobe malfunction. "She said she thought the act was intentional," Satur confirms. "And she was upset by it."
At that point, Kozlowski drove away -- but someone recorded his license plate number, allowing police to track him to his residence. He was subsequently arrested on suspicion of indecent exposure -- a single count, although Satur says the district attorney can choose to add another one.
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That evening, after Kozlowski was booked and processed, Satur says he informed the Boulder Valley School District about the arrest -- and yesterday, the BVSD took action.
Kozlowski "has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the police investigation and the district's own investigation," says spokesman Briggs Gamblin.
In addition, Boulder High principal Kevin Braney wrote a letter to parents that went out yesterday afternoon -- read it below. In it, Braney points out that Kozlowski was not acting as a teacher or coach at the time of the incidents in question and urges recipients not to see the administrative leave designation as a declaration of guilt. The decision was made, then, to enforce the notion that Boulder High School is a "safe and welcoming place."
The timing of Kozlowski's arrest was problematic, Gamblin concedes. "The teachers report this Thursday, the 9th, and kids begin returning Wednesday, August 15th," he notes. "So this is an extra challenge. But it's one of the things principals are expected to handle at a large high school, and he has. Coverage is already in place for all of his classes" -- Kozlowski teaches social studies and business -- "and his coaching assignment."
As for Kozlowski, who previously coached girls basketball at Boulder High (leading the squad to a 1994 state title), he has declined comment since the arrest -- but some of his students are sharing their thoughts online. Several have started a Facebook page dubbed Free "Slim Jim" Kozlowski. Not all of the comments are supportive, but one of them reads, "Jimmy didn't do it!"
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Here's Braney's letter to parents at Boulder High School.
Dear Boulder High Community,
Many of you have likely seen recent news concerning the arrest of a Boulder High School teacher this past Saturday (8/4) in Longmont on two misdemeanor counts of indecent exposure as announced Saturday evening by the Longmont Police Department. I know that a report such as this can be a disturbing one for our school community raising questions and concerns among students, parents, guardians and staff. I will share with you what information I can at this time. It is important to note that what was alleged to have occurred in Longmont on Saturday did not occur while this teacher was acting in a coaching or teaching capacity.
The teacher, Jim Kozlowski, has, as of today (8/6/2012), been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of investigations by law enforcement and BVSD administration. Paid administrative leave does not represent a determination of right or wrong on the part of an employee. It simply recognizes that a matter of serious concern has arisen that requires an investigation be carried out without the employee on the job. There is no higher priority for me -- and the rest of the BHS staff -- than to have our school be a safe and welcoming place for each and every student. I am not aware of any concerns about this teacher's interaction with any BHS students during his tenure in our school.
This type of situation can create stress for any member of our community especially students. I urge any student, parent or guardian who feels it would be helpful to have professional assistance in dealing with their reaction to this matter to please contact the BHS Counseling Office at 720-561-5351 for support.
While I cannot discuss the specifics of this personnel matter, I am available to discuss whatever other questions or concerns you may have about how this situation affects you and your family. I can be reached at either email@example.com or 720-561-2200. Finally, if you have information that you think law enforcement should know, please contact either the Boulder Police Department at 303-441-3300 or our school resource officer (SRO) Mike West, who is a Boulder police officer, through the school office at 720-561-2200. If you wish to make a report anonymously, you may call the State of Colorado's SAFE2TELL line at 1-877-542-7233.
Kevin Braney Principal Boulder High School
More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Kyle Horning busted for indecent exposure and burglary after walking in naked on 10-year-old."