2 Foxcroft Academy teens accused of sexually assaulting a classmate may attend school in person
NEWPORT — Two Piscataquis County teen boys accused of sexually assaulting a classmate will be allowed to continue school at Foxcroft Academy, although they are to have no contact with the victim, according to a judge’s decision Friday.
The juveniles, a 17-year-old from Dover-Foxcroft and a 16-year-old from Charleston, are each charged with three counts of gross sexual assault, including classes A, B and C. They denied the charges during an appearance Friday before District Court Judge Charles Budd at Newport District Court.
The juvenile from Charleston was also charged with criminal threatening, a Class D crime, and tampering with the victim, a class B crime.
The gross sexual assault charges stemmed from an incident that allegedly occurred Feb. 20 in Charleston, according to a juvenile petition.
The victim and a group of seven friends traveled to Bangor to eat at Chili’s, then drove to a witness’ home in Charleston, where the victim says he was raped, according to the incident report filed by Detective Sgt. John Trask of the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office in March and obtained Friday.
The eight people involved shared a blue bottle of alcohol at the Charleston home, the report said. The victim and the juvenile from Charleston began to wrestle, and the victim was placed into a headlock position, faced down on the couch, Trask said in his report.
The juvenile from Dover-Foxcroft allegedly pulled the victim’s pants down and penetrated the victim with the bottle, according to the report. The victim and the juvenile from Dover-Foxcroft later got into a physical altercation that involved the victim being hit in the face, according to the report.
During separate appearances in court Friday, the judge modified the juveniles’ conditions of release.
They will be allowed to continue attending Foxcroft Academy in person, though they are to have no direct or indirect contact with the victim and witnesses. Incidental contact, such as the juveniles seeing the victim or witnesses in the hallway or parking lot, is an exception because the students involved in the alleged incident attend the same school.
The juvenile from Charleston has become a “social pariah” at school and has been verbally accosted and threatened, attorney Nathaniel Hitchcock said. The defendant’s parents are exploring school options, but Foxcroft Academy did not offer remote learning as an option, he said.
Hitchcock requested that his client be given permission to make contact with two of the witnesses, who are lifelong friends. It would provide his client a reprieve from the serious charges and difficult experience, he argued.
Prosecuting attorney Janice Stuver pointed to how difficult the assault and aftermath has been for the victim. A student, who is not listed in the incident report, allegedly told Foxcroft Academy’s headmaster about a video of the alleged assault that was circulating around the school.
Budd denied the request and set the Charleston juvenile’s status conference for 1 p.m. Aug. 12.
The juvenile from Dover-Foxcroft is receiving counseling services in the Bangor area, attorney Jeff Silverstein said. The juvenile’s status conference was set for 1 p.m. July 15.
A status conference is when attorneys from opposing parties and sometimes a judge meet. The conference occurs before trial.
If you or someone you know needs resources or support related to sexual violence, contact the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault’s 24/7 hotline at 800-871-7741.