Saturday, June 22, 2024

114 West Elm Street
Graham, NC 27253
Ph: 336.228.7851

THE PUBLIC ASKS: Is there a police report involving Elon Elementary principal Jack Davern?


QUESTION: Is there a police report alleging that Elon Elementary School principal Jack Davern assaulted a child at school?

ANSWER: No official police report has been filed regarding an alleged assault by Davern, though the town of Elon’s police chief recently confirmed for The Alamance News that her department had received a complaint about an alleged assault allegation of an assault by Davern – that supposedly occurred late last year.

A subsequent investigation revealed that the claim had been “unfounded” and there was “no evidence of a criminal act,” Elon police chief Kelly Blackwelder said in an interview last week.  No charges have been filed in connection with the incident, according to Blackwelder and confirmed by Alamance County court records.

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Staff contacted the school resource officer at Elon Elementary about an assault that allegedly occurred at 1:51 p.m. on November 29, 2023, based on a claim that Davern was engaged in some sort of “hold” and had “taken it too far,” Blackwelder said.

The police chief stressed that there was no evidence to substantiate a claim that Davern had assaulted a child.

However, investigators did find evidence that the child, described as a 10-year-old male, had assaulted Davern, the police chief elaborated.

The incident was reported to then-superintendent Dr. Dain Butler, and a “thorough investigation” led police to conclude that no criminal act had been committed by Davern, Blackwelder told the newspaper.  A teacher had notified the SRO and waited for the child to “calm down,” but later recanted her complaint, Blackwelder said.

“Maybe she didn’t see what she thought she saw,” Blackwelder surmised during the interview.

Meanwhile, Davern announced several months ago his intention to retire from ABSS, effective July 1, after 30 years’ service as a state employee and 13 years as principal at Elon Elementary School.

ABSS officials customarily do not respond to questions regarding the performance of specific school employees, citing a provision in state law that they say provides confidentiality for most information in their personnel files.

THE PUBLIC ASKS: Have a question about a matter of public record? Call The Alamance News at (336) 228-7851; write to the newspaper at P.O. Box 431, Graham, NC 27253; or e-mail

If it’s a topic in the public domain — a matter of public record, including issues of government, courts, etc. — we’ll try to find the answer and print it in ‘The Public Asks’ column. (Please furnish as much complete and specific information as possible.)

Note: Issues regarding businesses — including salaries, policies, and practices — are usually not matters of public record, unless they are the subject of governmental or regulatory action, a court suit, or law enforcement activity.

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