Steamboat Springs An Oak Creek High School janitor who pleaded no contest to misdemeanor assault last week has resigned.
Soroco Superintendent Steven Jones said he was surprised to learn of Chris Neil's resignation.
"Chris has thought this through, and he has made a decision that is right for him at this time," Jones said Monday.
Neil could not be reached for comment.
The school administration became aware of Neil's departure in a letter dated May 12.
In the letter, Neil decided to end his 15-year tenure with the school district.
"Due to the conditions of my one-year probation, I decided it would be better to not return," the letter states.
Neil, 49, has been placed on a year of supervised probation because of a plea agreement where he entered a plea of no contest to third-degree assault May 9.
If Neil violates his probation, in which he is to stay out of trouble with the law except for minor traffic violations, Routt County Judge James Garrecht has warned Neil he will be looking at a jail sentence.
Third-degree assault carries a punishment of two years in the Routt County Jail and a fine of as much as $5,000.
Neil also has been ordered to pay $420 in probation costs and $138 in court fees.
The third-degree assault conviction stems from a February incident involving four middle school students at Soroco High School.
Neil was apparently upset at the middle school students after toilets in a high school bathroom were clogged with pencils.
Court records show Neil shoved a 14-year-old boy into a wall, grabbed a 13-year-old boy by the neck and pushed two 13-year-old boys out of the bathroom.
The boys denied committing the vandalism.
Because of the incident, Neil was placed on paid administrative leave.
If Neil complies with the one-year of probation, the conviction will be cleared of his criminal record. Included in the plea agreement was a one-year deferred sentence.
Neil's resignation came at a time when Soroco officials were leaning toward bringing back the long-time custodian with some conditions.
Jones expects Neil's resignation to become official when the issue is taken up by the Soroco School Board at its meeting set for 7 p.m. Thursday.
Neil expressed in his letter a desire to return to the school district after his one-year probation.