Gonzales Independent School District Police Chief Ross Gottwald is no longer employed by the school district, officials confirmed for the Inquirer.
“Gonzales ISD can confirm February 14 was Ross Gottwald's last day with Gonzales ISD,” wrote Veronica Johannsen, GISD chief of communications, marketing, safety and security. “As previously stated, Gonzales ISD does not comment or discuss personnel matters.”
The reason for or circumstances surrounding Ross Gottwald’s departure were not revealed by district officials.
Ross Gottwald’s name is no longer listed on the GISD police webpage on the district’s website, which solely lists Jared Koonce as a school resource officer for the district.
Koonce was the sole GISD police officer present at Gonzales High School on Wednesday, Feb. 15, when all staff and students on campus had to be evacuated to Apache Field due to a possible bomb threat that was reported by a GHS teacher when that individual overhead a student conversation.
Ross Gottwald had succeeded Matthew Camarillo, who established the GISD Police Department and held the position for five years before submitting his voluntary resignation in June 2019.
The Texas Education Code, Chapter 37.081, gives school districts the authority to establish a school district police department. Officers employed by the district are Texas certified police officers, pursuant to Article 2.12 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedures and Chapter 37.081 of the Texas Education Code. The department’s jurisdiction includes all territory within the geographical boundaries of the district and all property real or personal, outside the geographical boundaries of the district, that is owned, leased, rented by or otherwise under the district's control. Department jurisdiction travels with any and all Gonzales ISD students and employees during all times that they are engaged in school district-sanctioned events.
Ross Gottwald is the son of Sue Gottwald, a former Gonzales ISD trustee who also resigned last month. Sue Gottwald originally filed to run for re-election, but rescinded her application prior to submitting her resignation. A reason also was not given for Sue Gottwald’s resignation.