Foxcroft Academy parents, students come together after sexual assault case ruling

Published: May. 17, 2022 at 7:12 PM EDT
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DOVER-FOXCROFT, Maine (WABI) - After a ruling on a sexual assault case involving students from Foxcroft Academy, some parents and students have come together.

Last week, students involved in a sexual assault case appeared in court in front of a judge who ruled the students who are accused were allowed to continue attending the school with certain conditions.

“And if those kids have been attending this school since February and putting that victim through this, it’s even more disgusting than I thought it was,” said Ashley Gosselin, aunt of two Foxcroft Academy students.

“So you found this out through an outside source?” asked Angela Luna.

“Yes. No, we did not have any information from the school,” Gosselin said.

Gosselin and many other parents and students say they are outraged after they learned from an outside source that students involved in the alleged sexual assault were still in attendance as of Friday.

“We just couldn’t contain the, the emotion that came from that. We were incensed and wanted to do something to show our support and, and concern for all of the students,” said Gosselin.

Gosselin started an online petition garnishing over 1,200 signatures over the weekend, after a district court judge allowed the two students who are facing gross sexual assault charges, along with the victim, to attend school in person. Court documents state the students are allowed to have incidental contact as necessary to attend school but are not to communicate with each other.

According to court documents, on Feb. 20, seven students from Foxcroft Academy drove to Bangor for dinner at Chili’s and then went to one of their homes in Charleston.

The documents allege the victim was then sexually assaulted with a bottle of alcohol they were drinking from and the incident was believed to be filmed by two of the teens.

According to Head of Foxcroft Academy Arnold Shorey, he was notified of the incident and instantly notified law enforcement.

“So it was the Monday after the February break. Someone brought to our attention an event and happened off campus. Nothing related to Foxcroft Academy, but we immediately contacted the authorities and also the parent of the alleged victim,” said Shorey.

Shorey also says that after the ruling on Friday, the two students have currently not been in person and switched to remote learning.

Even though the situation has changed, parents and students are continuing to peacefully protest Wednesday morning.

“We have the power to affect change. We have power to support people and I think it’s beautiful that if nothing else, this victim will feel the love from the community around them and know that even if their school and the headmaster at their school doesn’t protect and support them of their community will,” said Gosselin.

“We take our safety very seriously. We work very hard. We have protocols that addresses on campus activities. We want our students and feel safe campus welcoming.” said Shorey.

TV5 learned Tuesday evening that Foxcroft Academy will be remote learning on Wednesday after administration learned of threatening comments made against the school on Tuesday.

The school says the decision comes after consulting with the Dover-Foxcroft Police Department.

This is the full statement from Foxcroft Academy:

“Foxcroft Academy administration learned today of threatening comments made against the school. After consulting with the Dover Foxcroft Police Department, the decision was made to be in remote learning mode for tomorrow, Wednesday, May 18.

“The administration continues to work with the police department to further investigate the threat and ascertain its validity. Out of an abundance of caution for the safety of students, faculty and staff, there will be no in-person classes, athletic contests, or extracurricular activities taking place on Wednesday at Foxcroft Academy, or involving Foxcroft Academy students.

“Any further updates will be provided on Wednesday. No further information is available at this time.”

Despite the threats, Gosselin says the peaceful protest will still be happening.

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