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GARY — Gary police are investigating the alleged theft of thousands of dollars in computer equipment from a Gary school.

Initially authorities said the theft occurred at the Williams Annex at 920 E. 19th Ave., the old Dunbar-Pulaski Middle School building. The school was closed last school year by the Indiana Department of Education because of poor academic performance.

The Gary Community School Corp. continues to use it as a middle school, renaming it the Williams Annex, housing middle school students who are enrolled at Williams, which is now a kindergarten-through-eighth-grade school.

Gary school Superintendent Cheryl Pruitt, who began looking into the matter Friday, said earlier in the day the equipment was not missing from the Williams Annex but from the shuttered former Lew Wallace Leadership Academy.

Though the incident supposedly happened a few years ago, it just came to light this week and was reported to the Gary Police Department. A report was released on the theft Thursday.

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Later in the day, Pruitt issued a statement, saying that on Jan. 20, 2016, Gary Community School Corp. employees — without authorization — filed an incorrect police report stating a number of electronic devices and equipment were missing/not accounted for. After realizing the police report was inaccurate, a complete equipment report was conducted of the alleged missing/unaccounted for properties.

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Ten PolyVision whiteboards were accounted for and not missing, according to the statement. Administrators are in the process of reviewing the equipment reports as it pertains to laptop and desktop computers.

“Equipment inventory is a continuous initiative in the district,” Pruitt said in the statement.

“We take the education of our students and the use of federal dollars very seriously. Central Office and building administrators are responsible for the accurate monitoring and reporting of equipment. Employees who filed the incorrect police report will be reprimanded. Anyone found guilty of unauthorized removal of equipment will be subject to termination.”

An employee was advised by Dr. Albert J. Holmes, the executive director of Federal Programs and the Office of Innovation and Improvement, to file a police report, according to the statement. Lloyd Keith is the director of Instruction and Technology. Pruitt is conducting a thorough review of the inventory process, the statement said.

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Southlake County Reporter

Carmen is an award-winning journalist who has worked at The Times newspaper for 20 years. Before that she also had stints at The Clarion-Ledger in Jackson, Miss., The Post-Tribune and The News Dispatch in Michigan City.