Sexual abuse at boarding school went on for decades
CT police may pursue criminal charges against former teachers at an elite boarding school who are accused of sexually abusing students in incidents dating back to the 1960s, PEOPLE has learned. In 2016, The Boston Globe published an article that described abuse at the school, and shortly thereafter, Choate announced that it had appointed an investigator from the law firm Covington & Burling..
The report said former student told investigators she and the teacher were in the pool, when he "told her he and his wife were separated 'I have these problems".
The report says the alleged sexual misconduct took place between 1963 and 2010 and included "intimate kissing", "sexual intercourse" and "forced or coerced intercourse".
Choate is the latest in a string of private schools, including St. George's School in Rhode Island and New York City's Horace Mann and Poly Prep schools, that have faced accusations that faculty members have abused students. In some cases, the school moved slowly and faculty members were allowed to stay at the school for a long period of time.
School officials noted in the report that the earliest reports of misconduct they received occurred in the 1960s, while a majority of the sexual abuse reports concerned incidents in the 1980s.
In a letter last fall, Choate told the school community about the investigation and asked "anyone with possible knowledge of sexual misconduct by faculty or staff at Choate" to contact the school. One can only have the greatest sympathy and deepest concern for the survivors. The conduct of these adults violated the foundation of our community: "the sacred trust between students and the adults charged with their care", write Michael J. Carr, chair of the board of trustees and Headmaster Alex Curtis.
The investigator's report includes the names of 12 former faculty members who allegedly abused students - and in some instances, the sexual relationships continued after the students left the school.
The school has retained the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network or RAINN, an organization that combats sexual violence, "to review Choate's existing policies and practices regarding sexual misconduct", Connelly said.
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Most horrific is the complete lack of action on the part of the administration-not a single incident was reported to the police.
In 2000, another student reported that the teacher kissed her, but school administrators allowed him to remain on the faculty until he retired - 10 years later, according to the report.
In a statement by the school, Choate said the school's administration has made a decision to release the full contents of the independent investigator's report in a "commitment to transparency". "It's not like a public school, with people coming in and out all the time", Paul Mones, a lawyer that represents victims of sexual abuse, told the Times.
The school began examining the allegations in 2013, after two alumni alleged they had been abused as students, according to the report.
One of the most extreme allegations of assault stems from an incident in 1999 involving a teacher at Choate from September 1998 to October 1999.
"On behalf of Choate Rosemary Hall, we profoundly apologize", the statement said.
The formal apology states: "We honor and thank the survivors of sexual misconduct who came forward". Rivera-Murillo had been "hanging out" with five Choate students around a resort swimming pool and nearby bar where they had been drinking.
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