Decades of sexual assault and sexual abuse at the Gilman School in Baltimore was brought to light in a comprehensive report obtained by the media in March of this year. Perpetrated over the course of multiple decades by two employees of the prestigious school for boys, at least 20 students have been identified of victims of sexual assault and abuse. There are likely more victims yet to be identified.
The Gilman School sexual assault tragedy started in the 1950s. The previously mentioned report set forth that Thomas Offutt, an employee of the school from 1954 to 1956, sexually abused at least seven boys during his two years at the private academy. Offutt is from what is described as a “prominent business family.” The second school employee accused of sexually assaulting boys at Gilman is Dr. Martin Meloy. Meloy stands accused of sexually assaulting and abusing students from 1983 through 2009.
A third abuser was mentioned in the extensive report, a Baltimore Judge named Robert Hammerman. Hammerman was not a member of the Gilman faculty but was permitted to operate an organization he founded for boys called the Lancers. Hammerman has never been accused of making physical contact with boys in his Lancers organization. Rather, former students have come forward to say that he inappropriately watched or leered at them while they showered and made improper comments about their bodies.
Offutt, on the other hand, is accused of sexual assault. He is said to have sexually molested boys, usually who were 11 or 12 years old, at the school and in the woods surrounding his family home.
Former students have stated that they were forced to engage in oral sex with Offutt. He is also reported to have groped boys’ genitalia and buttocks when they were at his desk in the classroom.
Dr. Martin Meloy’s Gilman sexual assault matter extended for a much longer period of time. Gilman was the school’s baseball coach. In that capacity, he would offer students “massages” at his home. What began as massages, inappropriate though they were, typically escalated. Boys ended up with their arms and legs tied as well as blindfolded. Meloy would them sexually assault the boys.
In some instances, Maloy coerced the boys into wearing loincloths as part of his sexual assault of them. He also photographed the boys clad in this manner, advising them that he was involved in what he described as a “Native American photography project.”
Offutt is still alive but has refused to comment in the aftermath of the detailed report. Meloy is deceased, as is Hammerman. Hammerman died by suicide.
None of the men were prosecuted as a result of the Gilman sexual abuse incidents. Maloy entered into a non-prosecution agreement with prosecutors at the time he was removed from his position at the school.
Gilman School administrators are said to have known of the victimization of students and the sexual assaults perpetrated against them. The report on the matter concludes that the school failed to take appropriate action to protect students from sexual predators.
If you’re a victim of sexual assault by a teacher, coach, or someone else in authority, if you’re an adult survivor of sexual abuse, the legal team at The Doan Law Firm is here to explain your rights. You can schedule an initial consultation with a Doan Law Firm sexual assault lawyer any time that is convenient for you by calling (800) 349-0000.
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