Brooklyn HS assistant principal raped teen in office: report

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Two men are accused of exploiting a recent graduate’s immigration status to sexually abuse her.
Credit: Nicolaus Czarnecki/Metro

A Department of Education assistant principal at a high school in Brooklyn raped a 17-year-old recent graduate of the school in his office in the summer of 2009, according to a report from the Special Commissioner of Investigation for the city’s public school system.

William Abreu, then the assistant principal at Progress High School for Professional Careers, reportedly offered a student a job after she graduated, knowing that because of her immigration status she could not legally live and work in the United States. The student’s mother urged her to take the job for the summer school session of 2009, right after she graduated. On her first day of work, Abreu reportedly raped her and threatened her that if she didn’t report back to work the next day he would “go to Immigration.” She told investigators she went back because she was afraid of being deported. He continued to molest her regularly despite her protestations, and sent her to an after school program coordinator, Juan Martinez, for the same abuse.

The same investigation found that Martinez also forced a then 15-year-old female student to perform oral sex on him in his office in March 2011.

Abreu had given that young girl a job in his office when she was in 10th grade in 2010. She had initially been sent to his office as a victim of bullying. In an encounter in 2011, when she was 15, Abreu reportedly told the younger student that her office job at the school was conditional on her having sex with him and Martinez, and asked her to have sex with additional people for money. After that meeting, he sent her to Martinez; that is when the forced oral sex reportedly took place. 

Abreu is also accused of stealing $1,500 from the 17-year-old graduate’s mother by claiming he would help them get an immigration lawyer.

Abreu has been suspended without pay since a June 2012 report from the same office found evidence backing up claims that he made sexual remarks to three 15-year-old female students. This second investigation came about when a confidential informant contacted the SCI and recounted asking the younger student about Abreu after hearing about the allegations against him in the June report. The younger student reportedly replied, “It’s true; it happened to me, too.” She reportedly said that after asking her for oral sex and offering her money to have sex with him and two other men, he sent her to Martinez, who made the same offer.

Commissioner Richard Condon is urging the Department of Education to fire Abreu, and has referred his report to Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes for possible legal action.

Condon also urged the Department of Education to ban Martinez, who is not currently a DOE employee, from future employment with the Department of Education, and continue their relationship with the after school program he coordinated only if the program fires him and bars him from future employment.

Martinez was already been banned from Progress High when this investigation began.

Follow Danielle Tcholakian on Twitter @danielleiat


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