Friday, June 4, 2010 at 10:07 a.m.
Two Christian teachers at Blanche Ely High School in Pompano Beach have been cleared of wrongdoing by the Broward County School District, whose investigators reportedly found that the two did not sprinkle holy water at an atheist teacher, as was alleged. But interviews conducted in that investigation appear to have triggered a criminal probe by the Broward Sheriff's Office, according to a report in the South Florida Times.
In the criminal case, the atheist teacher is not considered the victim. Rather, investigators are exploring whether the two Christian teachers -- Leslie Rainier and Djuna Robinson -- inflicted a "mental injury" to Blanche Ely students by making remarks that were offensive toward Haitians.
The incident, which occurred March 11, arose from a discussion over evangelist Pat Robertson's remarks following the earthquake in Haiti. He speculated that the earthquake was an act of God in retaliation for a pact with Satan made by African slaves in the island nation two centuries ago.
Complicating matters further, attorneys for Rainier and Robinson now say that they were informed by school district investigators that the atheist teacher, Schandra Rodriguez, did not in fact complain about being sprinkled with holy water. Those attorneys say that this aspect of the complaint was exaggerated by school principals.