This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Friday, December 3, 2021:
The Scottsdale (Arizona) Police Department (SPD) closed its investigation into whether former school-board president Jann-Michael Greenburg broke the law over a Google drive on his computer containing sensitive personal data on 47 parents who have protested the board’s policies on masking and CRT.
The SPD’s release said “It was determined that the drive contained opensource and/or public documents. 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 carefully worded statement implied that Greenburg could still suffer legal consequences from other quarters. The FBI has been asked to open an investigation into the matter, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office has been made aware of the contentious Google drive residing on Greenberg’s computer, and the Arizona Attorney General’s office is looking into it as well.
And the Scottsdale Unified School District (SUSD) claims that it is also conducting its own investigation into the matter.
Greenburg is accused, along with his father, Michael, of creating and maintaining a Google drive on their joint computer containing the names, addresses, phone numbers, pictures, and other sensitive information (such as professional licensing, divorce, and details on mortgages) on 47 parents with children attending schools in the district. Most of them are parents who have at one time or another either spoken at board meetings or otherwise publicly expressed their unhappiness over the board’s policies concerning masking and the teaching of Critical Race Theory (CRT).
Michael is alleged to have invested heavily into obtaining the information from various information sources, compiling the information under folders titled “Press Conference Psychos,” “Anti-Mask Lunatics,” and “SUSD Wackos.”
What I first saw the contents of the Google Drive and I saw my 8- and 10-year-olds’ photos, that was terrifying. I’m like, what is he doing?
He has pictures of my vacation home, property records. I’m not a political opponent [but] I’m an involved parent and that is threatening to me and makes me wonder why and what he was planning to do with those photos.
Another parent, Amy Carney, a mother of six and a candidate for the board, told Fox News that the collection of personal data was retaliation for her objections to the board’s policies: “I’d call this retaliation.… The list of parents targeted in the drive appears to be anyone who has spoken out about anything against our district publicly or otherwise.”
At first Jann-Michael denied knowing anything about the drive on his computer: “I categorically deny having anything to do with any of this,” he told Arizona’s Independent Newsmedia (IN). This brought an immediate reaction from Wray: “Jann sent the screenshot [to me]. He has access to this drive, so I’m really interested to understand how he’s going to say he doesn’t know about it because he had the drive open on his computer.”
Greenburg changed his story once the local police got involved. He told the board, “I am reassured [that] the Scottsdale Police Department is investigating the matter. There appear to be bad actors involved and I am confident our law enforcement will quickly resolve these issues.”
This is the classic deflection device used often by politicians whose shenanigans behind the scenes have been exposed: blame a third party for their crimes.
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in an e-mail to the board:
It has been reported that the … external drive was available or could be accessed by other board members, which may circumvent Arizona open meeting laws. Whether any public monies were improperly used in the creation and/or maintenance of this dossier is also of serious concern.”
Parents have a First Amendment right to assemble and speak in order to question the decisions public officials are making, especially when it involves the well-being of their children.
Local attorney Alexander Kolodin weighed in on the potential for legal action against Greenburg:
Both Arizona and the federal government have laws prohibiting both intimidation generally and voter intimidation in particular….
If these allegations are true Mr. Greenburg and his father might be liable for violating one or more of these laws.
Parents have begun a petition to remove Greenburg from the board after the board replaced him as president. At last count, more than 1,500 signatures have been garnered in their quest.
So far, Greenburg has refused to resign from the board. The New American will continue to follow this case as the other investigations run their course.