Yakima Sheriff’s Office Looking For Evidence Against Toppenish Teachers

TOPPENISH, WA – In late May the accusations of Johnny Cerna and Bertha Cerna, Vice Principal and Secondary English teacher, spouses at Toppenish High School were brought to the attention of The Yakima County Sheriff Office.

The Yakima Sheriff’s Office said some of the allegations brought forward were, “Hosting parties that included or encouraged students from the Toppenish School District to attend. At these parties we heard that there was alcohol being furnished to the minors, along with drugs and sometimes sexual favors.” said Casey Schliperoort, Public Information Officer for Yakima County Sheriff. 

Deputy’s are still asking current and former students to come forward with evidence, no matter how long ago it was because they have no idea how long this has been going on.

“We have no idea how many years this has been going on, we know at least of one year, another one we’ve known for at least 5 years but it could go back further.” said Schliperoort.

In the last 4 months the community members of Toppenish haven’t seen much change other than both the Cerna’s involved in the investigation being on paid leave, and some of the community members are fed up with waiting. 

“We don’t know what’s going on and the community has a right to know, they have a right to know that their kids are safe,” said David Hinojosa, Toppenish Middle School Counselor. “This is something that’s really important to me, so I’m willing to, I’m willing to lose my job for this; I’m willing to lose everything for this.” 

When I reached out to the Toppenish School District they gave me a written statement saying in part… 

Toppenish School District Statement

“Our School District takes all allegations of employee misconduct seriously and we typically place the involved staff member on administrative leave so that the allegations can be investigated by a thorough truth-seeking process that is fair to all parties involved, whether done by the School District, or law enforcement, or both of us.”

we cannot provide further information as a matter of human resources policy that is based on dedication to fairness to all involved while accurate investigative determinations are reached as to the truth or falsity of the allegations.”
I reached out to Johnny and Bertha Cerna and they didn’t respond. 
According to the Yakima Sheriff’s Office, the Toppenish School Board is doing an internal investigation.
If you have any information no matter how long ago it was, call the Yakima Sheriff’s Office at (509) 574-2500.

Source: NBC Right Now