Former Bethel Elementary School Principal Scheduled For Federal Sentencing

Feb 24, 2021

The playground at the Gladys Jung Elementary School.
Credit Katie Basile / KYUK

Former Bethel elementary school principal Chris Carmichael is scheduled to be sentenced by a federal judge on June 1.

In November 2020, Carmichael filed court documents pleading guilty to a federal charge of attempted coercion and enticement of a minor. On Feb. 18, he appeared by video to officially plead guilty in front of a federal judge. The former principal faces a minimum of 10 years, and up to life in prison. 

In June 2019, Bethel Police received information that a 14-year-old girl claimed that Carmichael had sexually molested her. Police investigated by posing as that girl’s 13-year-old cousin and messaging Carmichael online. According to a police affidavit, the former principal sent sexually explicit messages to and asked to meet up with someone he believed was a 13-year-old girl, but was actually a police investigator. 

The state has separately charged Carmichael for two counts of sexual abuse of a minor. Carmichael is scheduled to change his plea to the state on March 18.

Attorneys for four girls have also filed lawsuits against the Lower Kuskokwim School District, claiming that LKSD failed to protect them from sexual abuse at Carmichael’s hands. Jury trials for those lawsuits are scheduled to begin Oct. 4.