American Canyon principal charged for not reporting suspected rape

Authorities announced Thursday that a principal at American Canyon High School is facing charges for allegedly failing to report a sexual relationship between a teacher and a student.

The Napa County District Attorney's Office said it is enforcing mandated reporter laws to protect survivors.

The former principal, Andrew Goff, 61, is also on American Canyon's planning commission. He faces misdemeanor charges.

The case began in April when physical education teacher Brad Rowell, 41, was arrested twice in the same week on charges including sexual exploitation of a minor and statutory rape.

The high school’s campus hosted a teachers' conference Thursday, where educators from around the world discussed the responsibilities of mandated reporters. They emphasized that even suspicion of an inappropriate relationship with a minor must be reported.


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"I think principals in an administrative capacity have an obligation if they know of any criminal misconduct," said Roy McKnight, who traveled from Canada for the conference. "It makes you wonder, if the principals aren’t able to take proactive measures, then who can?"

KTVU legal analyst Michael Cardoza said it’s uncommon for a principal to be held accountable for another person’s crime.

"This is really unusual, but this is a misdemeanor. The maximum amount of time is only six months," Cardoza said. "We don’t know when the principal learned about what’s going on or why he failed to report it, so those are unanswered questions right now."

Dr. Rosanna Mucetti, the superintendent for Napa Valley Unified School District, said in a statement that the district "has a longstanding commitment to training staff on, and adhering strictly to, mandated reporting laws. This is a non-negotiable. Keeping our students and staff members safe is our priority."

"I just hope God’s will is done and whatever is done in the dark is brought to light," said Brandon Payton, a nearby resident.

Goff faces up to six months in jail or a $1,000 fine. His first court appearance is scheduled for two weeks from now.

Rowell is still being held at the county jail, charged with 25 felony counts of lewd acts upon a child, unlawful sexual intercourse, oral copulation of a minor, and possession of photos and videos depicting a minor engaging in sexual conduct.

The district attorney's office said it believes that the sex crimes Rowell is accused of took place in multiple jurisdictions, involved vulnerable victims, and were committed from a position of trust.

American Canyon High School has listed a new principal on its website for the upcoming school year, indicating that Goff has been let go.

Goff has declined to comment.