DURHAM, N.C. — A Quaker school in Durham is dealing with claims that a former principal inappropriately touched several students back in the 1970s.
The News & Observer of Raleigh reported that five students claim to have been inappropriately touched by a former principal at Carolina Friends School nearly 40 years ago.
Carolina Friends School posted a letter on its website last month disclosing the decades-old abuse, following a two-year investigation. In the letter, the school identified the alleged perpetrators and apologized for the harm.
An investigation reportedly started in 2012 after a former student posted a message on a Carolina Friends reunion group email list.
“If anyone was on the receiving end of inappropriate behavior by adults at the school all those years ago, reach out if you need someone to talk to,” the message reportedly read.
Several other alumni reportedly started communicating with each other and other alleged victims came forward.
“With sexual abuse, it’s the secrecy, the silence. The shame is what magnifies the hurt,” the man, now 57, told the News & Observer.
The five former students revealed that the man who had been the school’s principal between 1969 and 1975 inappropriately touched them.
One of the five students also alleged improper touching by a former teacher, according to the paper. That teacher committed suicide earlier this year after being contacted by the school about the allegation.
An Orange County prosecutor said charges are unlikely since the nature of the allegations was considered a misdemeanor and the statute of limitations on such crimes is two years.
Read full story: The News & Observer of Raleigh