Last Update: 7/13/2020
Attorney Commentary: Read the second section of this article for legal commentary on the legal rights of victims from school sex abuse attorney Brian Kent.
A teacher at Owen J. Roberts High School in Pottstown has been arrested and charged with several sex crimes for allegedly sexually assaulting a student.
53-year-old Stephen Eric Raught has been charged with institutional sexual assault, corruption of minors, endangering the welfare of children, and related offenses. He is accused of sexually assaulting a student on March 16, 2020.
According to the criminal complaint:
The Pennsylvania State Police were contacted on March 24, 2020, regarding a ChildLine report of sexual assault of a 17-year-old student by a teacher at Owen J. Roberts High School.
Police interviewed the victim on March 26 and she told investigators that she would see Raught in his classroom after school. She said that they would often discuss personal things and that he would often give her hugs.
The student says that on March 16, she went to retrieve items from the school with permission. She saw Raught at the school and he allegedly brought her to his classroom, where he hugged and kissed her. The two then went to another location in the room out of view of the door, where he sexually assaulted her.
Raught was arrested on May 7, 2020, and arraigned via video. His bail was set at $50,000 cash.
Brian Kent is a former sex crimes prosecutor who now represents sex abuse victims and their families in civil lawsuits. Here is Brian with some thoughts on the legal rights of school sex abuse victims and their parents:
Students should feel safe at school and no parent should ever have to worry that their child could become a victim of sexual abuse by a teacher or another school employee. While most teachers are trustworthy, there have sadly also been many cases of sexual abuse of students by teachers.
A full investigation is critical whenever a student accuses a teacher of sexual abuse. Along with a police investigation, the school should also be investigated to determine if the abuse happened due to negligence – such as failing to run background checks. In cases involving negligence, school sex abuse victims and their parents may have a case for a lawsuit.
If you or your child is a survivor of sexual abuse by a teacher, you can learn more about your legal options in a free consultation with one of our dedicated sex abuse victim lawyers.