Elementary School Substitute Custodian Charged With Rape - NECN
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Elementary School Substitute Custodian Charged With Rape

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    Elementary School Custodian Charged With Rape

    Ashburnham police officers arrested James McGrath, 64, on Wednesday and he was charged with four counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 years old, four counts of assault and battery, and two counts of rape.

    (Published Saturday, May 19, 2018)

    A substitute custodian at an Ashburnham, Massachusetts elementary school has been charged with raping an 18-year-old young woman who worked in some capacity at the school, according to Lt. Chris Conrad.

    Ashburnham police officers arrested James McGrath, 64, on Wednesday and he was charged with four counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 years old, four counts of assault and battery, and two counts of rape.

    It's not immediately clear if there is more than one victim.

    According to police, one or more of the assaults occurred at John Briggs Elementary School where McGrath works, while one or more occurred at a private residence. 

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    Lt. Conrad says no students would have been at the school when the alleged assault(s) occurred. 

    McGrath is the husband of the school's principal, Andrea McGrath.

    Superintendent of schools, Dr. Gary F. Mazzola, said in a statement, "The recent allegations against this substitute custodian are both disturbing and unacceptable. While he was never a regular employee, he was immediately removed from any further employment with the regional school district as soon as we learned of the allegations against him."

    Dr. Mazzola's statement confirmed that the incident in question occurred when students and staff were not present in the school building.

    The statement went on to say that during McGrath's employment as a substitute custodian for the Ashburnham-Westminster school district, "there were never any reports of any possible wrong-doing."

    McGrath was arraigned in Winchendon District Court on Thursday. It's unclear if he entered a plea.

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    Dr. Mazzola added in his statement, "We are hopeful for the victim and her family in her healing and recovery from this tragic event."

    No other information was immediately available.

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