Abuse: ‘Everything in God’s kingdom happens for a reason’
The headmaster of a Christian school in Nashville alleged told a 12-year-old boy who had suffered repeated sexual assaults to ‘turn the other cheek’ and that ‘everything in God’s kingdom happens for a reason.’
Masters, who comes from a missionary family, is described on the school’s website as:
A godly leader. Mr Masters has also gained notoriety for coining a phrase that he delivers frequently with energy and enthusiasm at BA events: ‘It’s another GREAT day at BA!’
The lawsuit, filed last Friday in Williamson County Circuit Court, accuses four eighth-grade students of repeatedly raping and sexually assaulting the sixth-grade student during the 2014-15 academic year.
The assaults at the academy are described in graphic detail in the lawsuit. On five separate dates in 2014/15, four eighth-grade male students abused John Doe.
The first incident occurred at an after-school football game party, the lawsuit says. Students at the party restrained John Doe, placing their buttocks on his face and their scrotums on or in his mouth, the lawsuit says.
On four other dates, four male students and others:
Conspired to engage in male on male sexual harassment, sexual assault and/or rape upon John Doe in the locker room not supervised by an adult.
In January and February of 2015, one of the boys would call out the 12-year-old boy’s name in the locker room before the attacks, the lawsuit states. The lawsuit says there were additional males in the locker room witnessing the event. On each date, two of the boys held closed the doors to the male locker room, preventing anyone from entering or leaving.
One of the boys proceeded to rape John Doe.
(The boy) would place his penis before John Doe and forcibly penetrated it into the mouth of Plaintiff John Doe without consenting claiming ‘eat it, eat it, eat it, open your mouth, accept it’.
The same boy reportedly told others around the basketball team that he:
Fucked that boy up the ass and stuck a Gatorade bottle in him.
Multiple students reportedly told their parents of the alleged abuse. In April 2015, the mother of a sixth-grade student told John Doe’s mother – Jane Doe – about the assaults. She then approached counselor Chris Roberts, an employee of Christian counseling ministry Daystar Counseling (motto: “One life touching another”).
Roberts is accused of not reporting the assault accusations to authorities, later telling Jane Doe reporting is not how “Christian institutions handle these things.” Roberts is a former Brentwood Academy employee, the lawsuit says.
Jane Doe took her son to a pediatrician, who stated:
If Daystar Counseling failed to contact Department of Children Services immediately then he would do so.
Tennessee law requires counselors and school officials report suspected child abuse or neglect.
Later, the boy’s parents were told by Masters that:
Boys being boys he could not investigate each of those and run a school.
Masters responded to a request for comment with an emailed statement that said:
Our highest priority is the safety and protection of our students. We take any allegation involving our students very seriously. We responded immediately and fully cooperated with authorities when we became aware of concerns in 2015. We are obligated to maintain confidentiality in any legal matter. Out of respect for all parties involved, and based on the advice of our legal counsel, we are unable to discuss details at this time.
Attorney for the plaintiffs, Roland Mumford, said the lawsuit shows a sad situation that could have been prevented.
These allegations are still under investigation by the Brentwood Police Department and the District Attorney’s office. We hope this will help protect children in private school where Title IX does not apply and citizens will become more aware of Tennessee’s Mandatory Report Statute that requires everyone to report child abuse.
John Doe and his mother accuse the school and its leaders of failing to stop the attacks even after having knowledge of:
The hostile and/or unsafe educational environment.
The negligence of Brentwood Academy employees led to the attacks on the boy, and these:
Inflicted anxiety, stress, depression, emotional harm, post-traumatic stress disorder and physical harm.