Sexual Assault | New Hampshire Public Radio

Sexual Assault

Booking photo

A former Phillips Exeter Academy teacher is accused of sexually assaulting a student at the prestigious boarding school multiple times between 2013 and 2015.

Gov. Sununu Signs Student-Written Sexual Assault Survivor Bill Into Law

Jul 20, 2020
Courtesy of John Gabrieli

  Gov. Chris Sununu has signed a bill that aims to support sexual assault survivors at colleges and universities. 

John Gabrieli is the director of the Every Voice Coalition, a student and survivor-led organization that wrote the language in the bill. Sophia Miller is a Dartmouth student organizer who helped bring the Coalition’s work to New Hampshire.

They joined NHPR's All Things Considered Host Peter Biello to talk about the bill.

Listen to the conversation:


Via Concord High School website

A report released this week by the Concord School Board confirmed that top school district officials failed to thoroughly investigate and report sexual misconduct complaints against former teacher Howie Leung.

Leung is awaiting trial on charges of sexually assaulting a former Concord student while she was in middle school.

The 155-page, independent report shows a full decade of student and staff complaints about Leung’s behavior, but it says few steps were ever taken to address it by school administrators. 

Dan Tuohy / NHPR

A newly released report sheds some light on how the Concord School District handled a teacher accused of having inappropriate relationships with students and sexually assaulting one of them.

Sarah Gibson for NHPR


Lawmakers heard testimony today on two bipartisan bills aimed at preventing sexual assault and helping survivors seek medical and legal services. 

SB 508 would remove the time limit for an alleged victim of sexual abuse to file a civil lawsuit. Right now, those abused as children have to file claims before they turn 30, and, if abused as an adult, they have to file within three years of the incident. 

Peter Biello / NHPR

In Concord-native Meredith Tate’s new novel, a young woman is kidnapped after a drug deal goes badly. To summon help, she has an out-of-body experience. Her quest to give her sister clues about where she is and how she got there serves as the central action of the book, which is called The Last Confession of Autumn Casterly. Tate spoke about it with NHPR's Peter Biello.

Editor's note: This interview includes discussion of sensitive subjects that may make some listeners feel uncomfortable, such as rape and sexual assault. 

Ali Oshinskie

The judge overseeing the proposed $14 million settlement between Dartmouth College and nine plaintiffs in a class action lawsuit has some concerns about the agreement.

The Valley News reports that at a preliminary hearing on Thursday, Judge Landya McCafferty expressed worries that legal precedent could prevent her from approving the settlement class, and that the group was potentially too broad.

NHPR Staff

A new legal filing outlines how the terms of a class action lawsuit would play out on the Dartmouth campus.

Last month, nine plaintiffs and Dartmouth College reached a $14 million settlement.

The women in the lawsuit alleged that Dartmouth administrators failed to properly protect students from harassment and assault by three former members of the school’s neuroscience faculty.

NHPR Staff

After more than a week of mediation, Dartmouth College and the plaintiffs in the Title IX class-action lawsuit have reached a settlement.

Savannah Maher/NHPR

It’s been a year since a high school guidance counselor working in the Exeter school district  was sentenced to prison. Kristie Torbick, 39, pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a 14-year old student.

But what happened in the courtroom the day of her sentencing continues to raise questions about child safety, and free speech protections, in New Hampshire.

Via Concord High School website


The Concord School Board is holding a meeting Monday, July 8, to gather public input on its policies on sexual harassment, abuse, and community safety. 


The meeting comes after revelations the district mishandled allegations against Howie Leung, a former special ed teacher, who is now facing charges of raping a former Concord student.  


The district suspended a student in 2014 who had raised concerns about Leung, and allowed him to continue working even after additional allegations emerged last December.



  Nearly 300 Dartmouth College alumni, students and professors are demanding the college drop its opposition to the use of pseudonyms by women suing the school for allegedly mishandling sexual abuse complaints.


The statement was also signed by Congresswoman Annie Kuster and state Senator Martha Hennessey, both of whom say they were assaulted when they were undergraduate students at Dartmouth.

NHPR Staff

A student group at Dartmouth College focused on preventing sexual violence is arguing Dartmouth makes it too easy for students who’ve committed misconduct to transfer to other schools.

At issue is whether and how Dartmouth should disclose sexual harassment and assault investigations on student transcripts.

Dartmouth Challenging Use of Pseudonyms in Class-Action Sexual Abuse Case

May 16, 2019
NHPR Staff

Dartmouth College is challenging the anonymity of plaintiffs in a $70 million class-action lawsuit that claims the school mishandled sexual abuse complaints for years.

Dartmouth argues the use of pseudonyms for two recently added plaintiffs will make it unfairly difficult for the college to defend itself.

The lawsuit, filed last fall, centers around three former members of the school’s neuroscience faculty. Plaintiffs argue Dartmouth administrators failed to properly protect students from harassment and assault by the men.

Sarah Gibson / NHPR

On Saturday, survivors of sexual abuse at St. Paul's School gathered for the first time on campus for an apology that some called a first step and others a missed opportunity.

Confronting Domestic Violence In New Hampshire

Feb 19, 2019
Patrick Feller; Flickr

We follow up on the Concord Monitor’s series, Fighting Back: Confronting Domestic Violence In New Hampshire, by looking at what a person needs when they leave an abusive relationship. such as emotional, legal, and financial support, and what barriers might stand in their way. We also discuss what our state is doing well, and where it can improve, in its approach to intimate partner violence. 

Dan Tuohy / NHPR


New Hampshire will implement a new system to keep track of evidence in sexual assault cases after finding that nearly 600 rape kits had not been submitted to the state crime lab.

The Executive Council on Wednesday approved a $104,000 federal grant for a Justice Department position and automated system to track the handling of sexual assault kits. When the state applied for the grant in May, there were 582 kits in more than 90 police departments that hadn't been sent to the lab.

Allison Quantz for NHPR

A former Dartmouth undergrad is suing the college, arguing he was illegally expelled over a sexual assault allegation.

A complaint filed Monday in federal district court outlines an encounter between the plaintiff, identified anonymously as John Doe, and another student, identified as Sally Smith, last spring. (Scroll down to read the filing.)

Via Facebook

A Dover resident is suing former employer Planet Fitness alleging she was drugged and raped by a manager. (Scroll down to read the complaint.)

A complaint filed by the plaintiff's attorney says the company was alerted to the alleged attack and that the accused manager has since been fired.

NHPR Staff

New Hampshire Congresswoman Annie Kuster said Monday she’s been hearing from fellow Dartmouth College alumni concerned about new allegations that the school repeatedly mishandled sexual misconduct complaints in its Psychological and Brain Sciences Department.

Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

Senator Maggie Hassan and Congresswoman Annie Kuster met with representatives from colleges and universities across New Hampshire Monday for a discussion of new Title IX rules proposed last week by Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

The rules, now open to public comment, would reduce the liability of schools for investigating assault and harassment reports, and boost protections for the accused. 

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.


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.