Irvine Principal On Leave Following DUI Arrest

IRVINE, CA – Police verified Wednesday that the Principal of an Irvine Elementary School was arrested for DUI Saturday night in Newport Beach after being involved in an accident.

 According to Newport Beach Police Sergeant, Evan Sailor, Nancy Jean Bower, 41 of Irvine, rear-ended a Hyundai with her Lexus while traveling northbound on Jamboree Rd. between San Joaquin Hills Road and Eastbluff Drive.

The driver of the Hyundai, Michelle Kirmani, 20, of Newport Beach, reported neck pain but didn’t require medical attention. Her passenger, Phillip Okura, 21 of Newport Beach was also apparently uninjured.

Following questioning and a roadside sobriety test, Bower was taken into custody and booked into Orange County Jail, said Sailor. Though Bower submitted a blood sample, the results of her blood alcohol content won’t be available for a few of weeks. 

Bower is the Principal of Westwood Basics Plus Elementary School in Irvine’s Northwood Village. District spokesman Ian Hanigan said Bower had been placed on administrative leave Monday. “It is our standard procedure until the matter is resolved to place the employee on a leave of absence,” he said.

The previous principal, Rena Thompson, will fill in while Bower resolves the matter. 

Bower was the principal of Meadowpark Elementary before coming to Westwood Basics and before that had been a teacher in the Irvine school district since 1997.


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