Victim May Take Action Against N.H. Prep School - NECN
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Victim May Take Action Against N.H. Prep School



    Victim May Take Action Against N.H. Prep School

    (Published Monday, Nov. 2, 2015)

    The family of the young girl involved in the St. Paul's sex assault case plans to hold the school responsible, considering filing a civil lawsuit against the prestigious prep school for not protecting their daughter.

    Owen Labrie, once a high school graduate who was on a full ride to Harvard, now a convicted felon sentenced to jail and registered as a sex offender.

    His victim, a once bright-eyed, ambitious, high school athlete, now forced to live with the terrifying effects of being sexually assaulted as a 15 year old.

    On the day Labrie was sentenced, attorneys for both sides agreed, the prestigious New Hampshire prep school is responsible for ruining two young lives.

    "Owen was looking to St. Paul's school to guide him, instead they mislead him," said Defense Attorney J.W. Carney during the sentencing hearing Thursday.

    "This involved a child who never would have had any interaction with an adult male but for the 'senior salute' culture at St Paul's School," said once of the victim's family attorneys Steve Silverman.

    Another family attorney, Steven Kelly, spoke with NECN from his Baltimore office Monday, saying they're moving forward with a civil lawsuit against St. Paul's Prep for failing to protect his young client.

    "There is no doubt the school was aware of the pervasiveness of this sexual conquest and of the 'senior salute' and the school did not adequately address it," Kelly said.

    The so-called 'Senior Salute' is a tradition at St. Paul's in which seniors try to hook up with as many underclassmen as possible before they graduate. 

    "This is a tradition of statutory rape of targeting minor children for sexual gratification," Kelly said.

    Kelly says students were keeping score of their sexual conquests, and that Labrie was given keys to the roof-top mechanical room where the assault took place. Now, the young girl's family wants to force a change - before someone else falls victim.

    "We are preparing in earnest to move forward as quickly as possible we don't want this to drag out," Kelly said.

    St. Paul's School had no comment Monday specifically regarding a potential lawsuit, but directed us to a statement issued last week from Rector Michael Hirschfeld, saying, "Our focus continues to be on our Schol and the educatoni we provide for our students. We remain committed to teaching our students our core values - that they live honorably, respectfully, and never forget to be kind."

    Kelly said the family is willing to work with St. Paul's to inflict change, but they're prepared to take legal action if necessary.



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