Hamburg School Board president testifies against embattled member

HAMBURG, N.Y. (WIVB) – For the first time since Superintendent Dr. Richard Jetter was put on administrative leave, the Hamburg School Board met to continue hearings against one of their members accused of official misconduct.

Jetter, a key witness against Catherine Schrauth Forcucci, damaged his car and then lied about it being vandalized, according to police.

Despite his absence, board president David Yoviene was determined to push forward and testified Monday night that Forcucci has a constant pattern of misconduct that never stops. He says they had problems with her at every executive session.

Yoviene was questioned about a text he received from Schrauth Forcucci in January. In it, she says, ‘if we could correct the injustice done to Chuck, she would feel so much differently about dealing with the district and board members.’

The board president says she was trying to use her bad behavior as a bargaining chip to hire back teacher Chuck Mahoney.

Yoviene was also questioned about an executive session in February when Jetter was being interviewed for the superintendent position. He says all hell broke loose when Forcucci yelled at staff member Jim Martinez.

“She caused such a horrific scene beforehand. She was screaming at the top of her lungs, the pitch of her voice hurt my ears, she was just relentlessly hysterical. She was hyperfocused on Jim Martinez. She wouldn’t stop screaming at him,” Yoviene said. “Everybody in that room, when she finally sat down, was so frazzled and just so upset by what they just witnessed and heard that now you’re supposed to have a meeting? It’s late at night and I have to go find Dr. Jetter and his poor wife. You could see how frightened she was.”

Before the board president took the stand, Senior Clerk Typist Jody Mcnamara testified that she called police a separate time when Forcucci wouldn’t leave Jetter’s office.

Forcucci was supposed to take the stand on Monday, but Yoviene’s testimony took so long that he will continue to be questioned when the hearings resume on Thursday.

Forcucci’s attorney says she plans to call five witnesses, with one of the most substantial being former school board member Holly Balaya. Forcucci will be her last witness called.