1 Northwest Academy owner faced previous abuse charges for physical altercation with students

Local News

A 2016 legislative audit of Northwest Academy reported numerous violations including giving students psychotropic medications without adequate consent from guardians. 

On Wednesday, the owners of the school, Marcel Chappuis and Patricia Chappuis were arrested.  The couple was taken into custody without incident at a residence located in the 7600 block of Painted Dunes Drive at approximately 11:53 p.m. on Feb. 12.

The couple is facing a long list of charges, including 43 counts a piece of child abuse and neglect.  The charges are in connection to the use of contaminated water on the campus in Amargosa Valley.

In a pre-recorded video, Sergeant Adam Tippetts, also stated that Patti faced two additional child abuse charges for physical altercations with students.

The Nye County Sheriff’s Office arrested the owners of Northwest Academy with the help of Metro Police at home inside a gated community near N. Cimarron and W. Ann roads. 

8 News NOW spoke to a parent whose daughter attended Northwest Academy and graduated in 2017.  She says she did notice rashes on her daughter, and now she suspects it may have been the water.

With that said, Bonnie Verssen does admit that the school turned her daughter’s life around for the best.

“She was doing her school 24/7. Anytime she had the time she’d do school. Instead of you know getting involved with any of the other kids of getting in trouble,” said Verssen.

Patti Chappuis was the secretary at Northwest Academy, while her husband, Marcel Chappuis was a psychologist.

Marcel got his P.H.D from the University of Utah in 1985.

According to the Nevada Boards of Psychological Examiners, he got his license to practice in the state in 2008 and has no previous disciplinary actions against him.

Both Patti and Marcel will be in court Thursday.

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