AG files suit

Scottsdale Water Policy Manager Gretchen Baumgardner said the water-use principle for commercial and multi-use development is only a tool to help guide decisions but is not a binding policy. (YouTube)

The legal woes for the Scottsdale Unified School District and Governing Board member Jann-Michael Greenburg continued to stack up last week as state Attorney General Mark Brnovich filed suit against Jann-Michael Greenburg and the district for allegedly violating the state’s open meeting law.

The suit claims the district and Greenburg, who was Governing Board president at the time, broke that law on three separate occasions in August 2021.

The first two times occurred Aug. 17 and Aug. 23 when the board disallowed any citizen comment on the district’s facemask mandate.

The suit claims Greenburg ran afoul of the law Aug. 24 when he interrupted the mother of an elementary school student who claimed a district employee was leaving neo-Nazi comic books around for students to find.

It was after this last incident that Jann-Michael Greenburg was heard on a hot mic saying, “Jesus (expletive) Christ people!”

In all three instances, Jann-Michael Greenburg and the district “applied a content-based restriction on speech,” according to the suit.

Greenburg declined to comment on the situation.

District spokeswoman Kristine Harrington said, “The District responded to the Attorney General’s Open Meeting Law team in December 2021 and has not received any information regarding the complaint until it learned that a lawsuit had been initiated.

“The District does not comment on pending litigation but maintains that it complied with the Open Meeting Law with respect to the statutorily required hearings and the meetings held in August 2021.”

The suit seeks a fine for an unnamed amount on Greenburg and his removal from office.

Greenburg’s term expires at the end of the year and he is not seeking re-election.

This is not the only ongoing lawsuit naming Greenburg and the district as defendants.

Amanda Wray, as well as Kim Stafford and Edmond Richard – all of whom are either district parents or former district parents – filed a suit in the Maricopa County Superior Court that was later remanded to federal court for an unspecified amount of money against Greenburg, his father Mark Greenburg and the district.

That suit hinges on a dossier that Mark Greenburg collected on parents who were members of a private Facebook group called, “SUSD-CAN.”

“Defendants used both legal and illegal methods to accomplish their unconstitutional goal,” the suit contends. “They amassed reams of public and private information about the plaintiffs, including information related to plaintiffs’ jobs, businesses, finances, medical history, family history, housing situation, and children.

“They videotaped, photographed, and recorded the plaintiffs and their children. They used fake names and accounts to stalk the plaintiffs’ social media activities and publicly berate them using false and grossly contorted information from their expansive dossier. And they misused district resources and what should have been private, protected parent communications to the district to retaliate against plaintiffs for their protected speech.”

Mark Alan Greenburg filed his own lawsuits in federal and county courts in February against Wray and her husband Daniel Wray, alleging they were wrongly accusing him of stalking, harassing and intimidating her.

His suits say Amanda Wray accused him of sitting behind her at a board meeting in order to intimidate her, took pictures of her and her children outside governing board meetings, harassed her by sending her messages in the middle of the night and even went as far as trying to intimidate someone by showing them a gun.

The suits says the Wrays also harassed him by accessing the dossier, which was intended for private use only and sharing it with other people.

The dossier was discovered last year when Jann-Michael Greenburg shared a computer screen shot with Stafford that included the link to the dossier.

Three Governing Board –, except for Julie Cieniawski – called for Greenburg to resign from the board. The board then voted 4-1 to strip Jann Michael Greenburg of the presidency. Greenburg castthe lone vote against it.

Scottsdale Police investigated the contents of the dossier but found it “contained opensource and/or public documents” and that “therefore, it has been determined that no criminal conduct has been committed at this time that would be under the jurisdiction of the Scottsdale Police Department.

“The Scottsdale portion of this investigation is now closed,” the statement continued, adding detectives met with the FBI and Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich’s office and “provided them with a copy of our investigation for review in determining if any criminal acts might fall under their respective jurisdictions.”

Brnovich called for the FBI to investigate the dossier and if there was any wrong doing involved. Brnovich’s office did not provide an update on that request.

SUSD also conducted an independent investigation with a third-party auditor, which found no district resources were used to collect or access information in the dossier.

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