BABYLON, NY — A Babylon High School graduate says she was sexually and emotionally abused by a teacher who continued to teach at the school for years after the alleged abuse occurred.
Brittany Rohl, 28, said in an open letter addressed to the Babylon Board of Education on Tuesday that between 2010 and 2013 a teacher groomed and sexually abused her until her second year of college.
“It is inconceivable that school employees were not aware of these “rumors” back then, ” Rohl wrote to the board. “I firmly believe that there are professionals currently working within the school district who knew back then and who were not surprised in the past few weeks. We probably aren’t going to be able to prove that, but I want you to know that we know.”
Suffolk police confirmed to Patch on Tuesday that no criminal activity was found in regard to another Babylon High School teacher who was the subject of “disturbing allegations” last month. However, many community members have spoken out to decry a toxic culture they say has existed in the district for many years, allowing such incidents to be swept under the proverbial rug by the administration.
In a detailed, eight-page timeline shared with Patch and on social media, Rohl said she signed up to participate on a school sports team in March 2010. The teacher was her coach. That spring, she claimed he began to “isolate” her and make her feel “special”.
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“I was ‘overlooked’ and he was the only one who appreciated me,” she wrote.
Rohl said he started having weekend practices with her and one other student, and eventually exchanged cell phone numbers. The two would often text. In fall of 2010, Rohl took one of the teacher’s classes. He gave her special treatment, she said.
“He let me arrive to class late, leave early or in the middle of class to get cookies,” she wrote. “I was openly a favorite student.”
When applying for college, Rohl said she was set on attending the University of Delaware, but the teacher consistently encouraged her to attend Fordham University. Rohl claimed he even drove her and other students to Delaware — without permission slips — to convince her that she “wasn’t missing anything”. He also wrote one of her recommendation letters, she said.
Brittany Rohl and Emma Glynn pose before attending their senior prom. Rohl claims that the teacher texted her that night, saying that they should “be dates.” (Emma Glynn)
On the day of her senior prom, Rohl said that the teacher texted her, saying that they should be “together as dates.” They took a picture together that night.
On June 25, 2010 at a graduation party, Rohl said the teacher, who was married, asked to meet her in a secluded spot and kissed her for the first time. Within the next month, Rohl claims he told her he wanted to take her virginity and that “only he could because no one could love me like he did.”
On August 2, 2011, — Rohl’s 18th birthday — the teacher came to her house in the middle of the night, she said. They had sex for the first time and felt like she couldn’t say no, she said.
“He told me that he wanted to wait to have sex with me until after my 18th birthday so that no one could say that what we were doing was wrong,” she wrote.
She continued to say that other student-teacher relationships existed.
“He pointed out other rumored teacher/student relationships, many of which are coming to light right now, and detailed why those relationships were ‘bad’, but ours was ‘good,'” she wrote. “He said he cared about me, while the other teachers didn’t care about the students.”
For the rest of that summer, Rohl claimed the teacher would take her to competitions and that they would have sex at least once a week. Once she started attending Fordham, the teacher would visit her at her dormitory once a week to have sex with her, she said.
“He told me that if Babylon finds out they would ‘get it all wrong’ and tell me that I was a homewrecker,” she wrote. “He told me he wanted to marry me one day. He said he would take care of me for the rest of my life.”
Rohl wrote that the teacher became controlling, constantly texting her and discouraging her from making friends. She isolated herself from her peers, and “ate every meal alone.” He told her that if she drank, she’d be raped by a male student.
“If we hadn’t heard from each other in about 30 minutes, we panicked. We assumed that someone had found the person’s phone and we were going to be found out,” she wrote.
The teacher instructed her to create a Yahoo messenger account, she said, and to adjust her settings so that messages were immediately deleted.
Between May and August of 2012, he would visit her on her lunch breaks at her summer job to have sex, she said. Rohl claimed that during the abuse, she had suicidal thoughts and once considered hanging herself.