Medford schools chief preparing DUI defense

Medford Schools Superintendent Joe Del Rossi, who was charged with DUI nearly four months ago when he flipped over a district-owned Jeep, is asking the police for more documents to prepare his defense.  When he was arrested Feb. 26 in Evesham, he told police he had swerved to avoid a deer.  

There's no word yet on whether he will return to school in September. 

Del Rossi took a leave of absence in March and is being paid for accrued sick and vacation time, according to school district officials.  His salary is $179,000. 

On Monday, Del Rossi appeared before Maple Shade Municipal Court Judge Corey Ahart for a status hearing.  His lawyer, John S. Sitzler, said Evesham Municipal Judge Karen Caplan had excused herself from the case due to a conflict of interest.

Judge Ahart scheduled another hearing for 5 p.m. July 23.  She told the Evesham prosecutor to give Sitzler additional police files needed for his defense.    

Del Rossi has not returned calls for comment but issued a statement in March apologizing for "any inconvenience, concern or unrest this situation has caused our school district, especially our students."  

But now, school's out for summer and the events of the past few months are likely the furthest thing from students' minds.