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Salida High School principal facing charges returns to school

Principal Talmage Trujillo was arrested after a school lockdown
talmage trujillo salida principal mug.jpg
Posted at 4:08 PM, Oct 07, 2021

SALIDA, Colo. — The Salida High School principal returned to school on Wednesday after being arrested for his alleged response during a school lockdown in September.

The Salida School District Board of Education met Tuesday evening for an executive session and determined Principal Talmage Trujillo could return to work immediately, according to a press release from the district.

The board reviewed staff statements, video footage, community letters and heard testimony from the staff regarding the school lockdown over reports of a suicidal minor who may have been armed with a gun near campus Sept. 23. According to the district, the board saw discrepancies between some of the accounts of what happened and the police affidavit, though it did not provide details into what those discrepancies were.

According to Trujillo’s arrest affidavit, one of the responding Salida police officers, CJ Meseke, said Trujillo was with the minor in question, wouldn’t disclose their location and wouldn’t cooperate with police.

Eventually, officers learned Trujillo had taken the minor to The Crest Academy middle school and met the pair there.

No one was hurt during the incident. It's not clear what happened with the minor following the incident and the affidavit does not confirm if the minor did have a gun.

Trujillo was arrested on Sept. 27 for multiple misdemeanor charges, including harboring a minor, obstructing a peace officer, obstructing government operations and first-degree official misconduct.

The board said disciplinary actions regarding Trujillo and Superintendent David Blackburn — who, according to the arrest affidavit, told officers on scene the day of the lockdown to "get the f--- out of my school” — are confidential personnel matters.

The school board said it’s putting out a call to action and inviting the Salida City Council to meet “to find ways to better partner.”

Following legal proceeds, the board also said it’s directing district staff to seek mediation with police through a neutral third party