Sexual Assault

Brainlesssteel via Flickr CC

The sexual assault accusations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh are being felt on New Hampshire's college campuses.

At the University of New Hampshire, faculty and students staged a #BelieveHer walkout in support of survivors this week.

Amy Culp runs the Sexual Harassment and Rape Prevention Program (SHARPP) at UNH. She says the Kavanaugh hearings have had ripple effects on campus:

Advocates and attorneys who represent sexual abuse victims see the settlement between St. Paul’s School and the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office as “groundbreaking,” and some say it could serve as a model that could be implemented at private schools around the country.

A new report details allegations of sexual misconduct by ten former members of St. Paul's School faculty, including David Pook, a former teacher who pled guilty to witness tampering in a case related to his alleged relationship with a student.

UNH

A new UNH study looked at how well college personnel understand sexual assault and rape reporting regulations.

Researchers called Title IX offices, which oversee gender equality issues, and campus police at more than one hundred and fifty colleges around the country.

St. Paul's School

 

A former St. Paul’s student has filed a federal lawsuit against her alma mater, alleging the Concord private school did not protect her from sexual assault and harassment from male students in 2013-2014.

The former student, who enrolled at St. Paul’s in 2012, is not named in the lawsuit, instead referred to as Jane Doe.

Chester Irons' relationship with St. Paul’s School didn’t always feel so complicated.

He’s in his 60s now, yet he can still remember the exhilarating feeling of being dropped off at the Concord boarding school for the first time.

"I stepped out of the car with my parents and said goodbye to them and ran off with a bunch of friends I met literally 20 minutes earlier. It was a new beginning, a new adventure and I was very excited," he recalled in a recent phone interview.

Alumni Sue St. Paul's School Alleging Sex Abuse

May 8, 2018
St. Paul's School

We look at a lawsuit brought by two alumni against St. Paul’s School, saying the school failed to protect them from sexual abuse by faculty members in the 1960s and 70s. Their lawsuit calls the Concord prep school a “haven for sexual predators” that has failed to protect children for decades.  We also examine a recent agreement between the private school and the Concord Police Department about reporting sexual assault.

File photo

St. Paul’s School is now required to report any allegations of sexual assault to the Concord Police Department, according to an updated agreement between the college prep school and local police.

NBC/Today Show

Chessy Prout has released a new memoir in which she talks about her time at St. Paul’s School in Concord, where she was sexually assaulted as a freshman.

In the book, I Have the Right To: A High School Survivor’s Story of Sexual Assault, she provides an unfiltered look into her assault and her decision to go public as a survivor. Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley talked with Prout about activism and her new book.


In the months since #MeToo went viral on social media, millions of people across the globe have broken the silence on their stories of sexual assault and harassment. But where do we stand in New Hampshire? How has the Granite State responded to the Me Too movement? What conversations are we having? What actions are we taking?

Emily Corwin, NHPR

A group of lawmakers from both parties are trying to fix a loophole in New Hampshire’s sexual assault law that allowed a former law enforcement official to evade charges that he raped an inmate who he was driving across the state last year.

N.H. House Passes Bill Aimed to Protect Inmates from Sex Assault

Feb 10, 2018
NHPR File Photo

  The New Hampshire House of Representatives has passed a bill aimed at protecting inmates from sexual assault.

The bill was filed in response to a case in which a deputy sheriff had sex with a female inmate he was transporting to prison. He was convicted of rape under a law that prohibits sex between prisoners and those with director authority over them, but the state Supreme Court overturned his conviction because he was employed by the county sheriff, not the prison or jail.

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St. Paul’s School in Concord is settling a civil lawsuit brought by the family of a former student, Chessy Prout, who was a 15-year-old freshman at the elite boarding school when she accused then senior Owen Labrie of sexually assaulting her.

Courtesy of St. Paul's School's Website

Long before the #MeToo movement took down politicians, movie moguls and powerful media personalities, St. Paul’s School in Concord was grappling with its own history of sexual misconduct.

Paige Sutherland / NHPR

A statement issued this week by the leader of Phillips Exeter Academy in defense of two deans contradicts a New Hampshire State Police report from 2016. The report alleges two deans had violated a mandatory sex abuse reporting law.

Rockingham County Attorney’s office decided against criminal charges, with deans Melissa Mischke and Arthur Cosgrove now remaining on campus.

Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with attorney Peter Hutchins about the dropped charges, and sexual harassment reporting at high schools.

NHPR Staff

Allegations of sexual misconduct involving three professors in the Psychological and Brain Sciences Department at Dartmouth College do not relate to the professors' treatment of human research subjects, according to the college.

 

In the past few months, the Manchester VA Medical Center met with scandal, disaster, and a full helping of public outcry. Today on Word of Mouth, NHPR's Peter Biello looks back on the summer's news and tells the story of one woman's effort to improve hospital facilities for survivors of military sexual trauma. 

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: November 3, 2017

Nov 3, 2017

The state Attorney General's office launches a criminal investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct involving three Dartmouth College professors.  A report regarding sexual abuse by faculty and staff at St. Paul’s School contains new allegations against five individuals.  And residents struggle to recover from the fourth-largest power outage in state history.

Millyard800 / Wikimedia Commons

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire will spend the next year developing a program to train  students on how to respond to peers when told about incidents of sexual violence.

A free smartphone app developed at the University of New Hampshire to help prevent sexual assault and provide assistance to victims is now available nationwide.

The app – uSafeUS – was unveiled at an event on the UNH campus in Durham last week. It’s a national version of an app that was made available to students on 21 college campuses across New Hampshire last fall.

Sharyn Potter is a professor of sociology and executive director of research at the Prevention Innovations Research Center at UNH, and helped develop the app. She joined NHPR’s All Things Considered.

Wikimedia Commons

Phillips Exeter Academy and the Exeter Police Department have announced a new agreement concerning the reporting of sexual assaults on campus.

A new memorandum of understanding between the prestigious prep school and the local police department outlines procedures they say will help keep students safe from abuse of all kinds.

Sam Evans-Brown

Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas is suing a former alderman and a critic, saying he was defamed by their accusations that he covered up a sexual assault at a high school.

The lawsuit in Hillsborough County Superior Court targets former Alderman William Cashin and critic Jon Hopwood, who wrote to aldermen accusing Gatsas of "engineering a cover-up."

WMUR reports that the lawsuit says the men "knowingly made false allegations."

Eddie Cheuk

New Hampshire's Attorney General Gordon MacDonald recently announced a criminal investigation into sexual assault allegations at St. Paul's School, in Concord. We discussed recent local stories involving private schools such as St. Paul's, as well as the broader culture in elite boarding schools that may contribute to this issue.  And we talked with a N.H. lawmaker who says she'll be working on changing laws to better protect victims of sexual violence.  


Amanda Loder, StateImpact New Hampshire

Laurie Laizure of Manchester likes to think she’s the kind of parent who’s engaged in what’s happening at her kids' schools.

Which is why she was so surprised to learn, when scrolling through Facebook last month, about a sexual assault that took place at Manchester West High School. In 2015, a 14-year-old student — a classmate of Laizure's daughter — was raped by an older student in a secluded hallway during school hours.

Eddie Cheuk

The attorney general’s office made waves Thursday night in announcing its plans to launch a criminal investigation into St. Paul’s School over its handling of sexual assaults on school grounds.

While the investigation is still just in its beginning stages, some are already starting to draw parallels to a time when the state took on another powerful institution over its handling of sexual abuse: the Catholic Church.

Eddie Cheuk

Police in New Hampshire are investigating reports of a sexual assault at a prep school with a history of sexual misconduct allegations.

Concord police say they opened an investigation at St. Paul's School on June 1 after a female student told a staff member she had been assaulted by another student. The Concord Monitor reports the police investigation remains open as of Wednesday.

Manchester school leaders and city officials are working on a policy that will spell out how information about crime and safety incidents is disseminated to parents and citizens.

This follows concerns over how information about a rape in one of the city’s high schools nearly two years ago was kept quiet until last week, when the perpetrator was sentenced to jail.

Emily Corwin / NHPR

Two laws signed by Governor Sununu on Wednesday will limit certain legal arguments in sex crime cases.

Beginning January 1 of next year, a defendant can no longer argue in court that he or she did not know the age of a prostitution or human trafficking victim.

Additionally, Sununu signed a high profile bill strengthening the state’s so-called “rape shield” law. He explained the change would “ensure that the private and unrelated sexual history of sexual assault victims will not be used against them in any court proceeding.”

Weekly N.H. News Roundup: May 26, 2017

May 25, 2017

Senate Republicans are confident their state budget plan will clear the full Senate. A  full-day kindergarten proposal is tied to the lottery game KENO.  St. Paul’s School releases a report detailing allegations of sexual assault by faculty and staff decades ago. And Fish & Game Officials are flooded with calls to save trouble-making bears in Hanover.


St. Paul's School

An investigation into sexual misconduct at St. Paul’s School in Concord has found substantiated claims of abuse involving 13 former faculty and staff. NHPR’s Peter Biello spoke with Cambridge attorney Eric MacLeish, who has experience litigating against institutions accused of sexually abusing children, and has been in touch with three alleged victims of sexual misconduct by St. Paul’s faculty and staff.

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