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The principal of Chanhassen High School was arrested Tuesday morning on suspicion of possessing child pornography.

Timothy Dorway, 44, was booked Tuesday after Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agents with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force arrested him.

The arrest followed a search of his home in Victoria and at the high school where he was named principal in 2010. He was placed on leave Tuesday.

Charges have not been filed. No Eastern Carver County Schools students are involved in the investigation, according to the school district.

“This is a difficult day for our students, parents and community,” Superintendent Jim Bauck said in a statement. “There are questions that we want answers to, and we’re working with the BCA as they conduct an investigation to find those answers. … We will need our community’s support of our students in the days ahead.”

The Carver County Sheriff’s Office is assisting with the investigation, and the school district is conducting its own investigation.

Dorway began teaching English, journalism and speech in 1995 at Park High School in Cottage Grove, where he worked until 2002. During his time, he also supervised yearbook, newspaper and speech students and coached football and baseball. He went on to serve as Owatonna High School principal from July 2002 to June 2006. Dorway was employed by the Rochester Public Schools from July 2007 to June 2010. Before moving to Chanhassen High School, he had been principal at Rochester Mayo High School.

Carver County Commissioner Tom Workman said his son had Dorway as a homeroom adviser and described him as a gregarious character. “My son will be shocked,” Workman said.

School district officials sent out a letter to parents Tuesday notifying them of Dorway’s arrest. In the letter, Chanhassen High School students were discouraged from posting about Dorway’s arrest on social media because Dorway has family members in the district.

“We asked students to keep those individuals in their thoughts and not post anything online or share rumors they may hear,” the letter reads. The high school opened in 2009, and Dorway became principal the following year. The school has about 1,700 students.

Dorway, who has three children, is divorced. He and his ex-wife were granted joint legal custody of the children, who were 12, 15 and 17 at the time of the divorce in 2014.

‘He built Chanhassen High’

The mood at Chanhassen High School was somber Tuesday as teachers and students digested the news, said Alex Spillum, a 17-year-old senior. Teachers appeared to be stunned, and students picked up that something was wrong, he said.

Students were shocked when teachers read a scripted announcement of what had happened, and some cried, Spillum said.

Spillum, quarterback on the school’s football team, knows Dorway and is a friend of his son. He called Dorway an “important guy to me.”

“He built Chanhassen High School,” he said.

Alex’s mother, Wendy Spillum, of Chanhassen, added that Dorway was very supportive of athletics at Chanhassen and “a wonderful presence for that school.”

“I will support him,” she said, adding that he should be considered innocent until proven guilty.

Though two cars were parked in the driveway at Dorway’s two-story house in Victoria, no one answered the doorbell. All the blinds were drawn.

Hunter Kraus, a senior at Chanhassen High School who has known Dorway’s son since middle school, called Dorway a beloved administrator who has shaped the school’s nationally accredited flex program.

At their home just down the block from Dorway’s, Kraus and his mother, Michelle, struggled to comprehend the allegations Tuesday night.

“In my eyes, it isn’t true,” said Hunter, who has visited the Dorway home many times. “He’s changed what education can be. The guy has a lot to offer.”

Michelle Kraus said she hopes authorities haven’t made a mistake and ruined the reputation of a man who has been a “fantastic addition” to the school.

“It doesn’t fit with the man I know,” she said. “He’s been nothing but honorable.”

Staff writers Beena Raghavendran and Brandon Stahl contributed to this report.

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