Jun 03,2008 00:00
WASHINGTON COUNTY, Ore. – The 71-year old former superintendent of La Grande Public Schools, under investigation and charged with sexually abusing a child at her seventh birthday party, has died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, deputies reported.
Irvin Nikolai’s wife called 911 Monday evening to report that he had shot himself as he cleaned his gun at their home located in rural Washington County, Oregon, at 40712 NW Otis Lane. He was pronounced dead at the scene with a gunshot wound to the chest, Sgt. Dave Thompson said.
Investigators don’t yet know if the shooting was accidental or intentional, and no foul play is suspected, a news release stated. There were several guns and a gun cleaning kit found near the victim.Nikolai was indicted on four counts of first-degree sexual abuse in April after allegations of inappropriate touching the seven-year-old girl arose from the incident on April 19. Nikolai resigned from his school position upon his arrest, and his court date had been scheduled for July 8.