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Principal assaulted at Chavez

Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Cesar Chavez School, where a father of five reportedly assaulted the school’s principal on Thursday.


A 27-year-old Madera man has been arrested for assaulting a Madera Unified School District employee at Cesar Chavez School. According to news reports, Gregory Smith was apprehended Thursday by police after physically assaulting the school’s principal.


District officials refused to name the victim, but knowledgeable sources have identified her as Stephanie McPherson.


Smith is reported to have led police on a short chase. He reportedly had his five children, all between the ages of 3 to 9, inside of the vehicle, unrestrained, during the chase.


All five children have been placed into protective custody and turned over to Madera County Child Protective Services.


Smith is now facing charges of child endangerment, obstruction, failure to yield, and battery on a school official with injury.


The employee who was assaulted suffered only minor injuries, and no one was hurt.