Hey, kids! It looks like Mr. Cleland isn't going to jail after all.
Sentenced earlier today in Leelanau County's 86th District Court, Patrick J. Cleland did serve one day in jail, will be strictly supervised on probation for two years, and has to pay a fine.
The former/current/who-knows-what employee of Steven Ingersoll's school for scandal, the Bay City Academy, will be spending the next two years on an enforced straight and narrow.
No, he's not taking up gymnastics or training on the balance beam — his attorney, Traverse City's Patrick E. Heintz, successfully struck a deal to keep his client out of the Grey Bar Hotel with a delayed sentence.
In return, Cleland will be on supervised probation for the next 730 days. If he follows the terms and conditions of his probation, a judge could dismiss the stalking charge.
However, if Cleland violates his probation, he could be sent to jail.
Arrested on May 25, 2015, Cleland was formally arraigned September 22 one count each of stalking and attempted possession of a controlled substance analogue. Cleland's attorney, Patrick E. Heintz, struck a last-minute, pretrial deal on November 9, with Cleland pleading guilty to the stalking charge in return for the drug possession charge being dismissed.
Leelanau County court records reveal an area woman sought and received a personal protection order against Cleland, formerly principal of Mancelona's North Central Academy. Cleland was slated by Mitten Educational Management's Brian Lynch in May as the new Superintendent of the Bay City Academy, but his employment status with the stumbling charter school is unclear.
The personal protection order was granted on May 26, and Cleland was served on June 8.
So, if you happen to see Cleland out having a cold one, or lurking slowly behind a woman, call the Bay City Times.
Better yet, call a cop.