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Sexual Harassment In a Military Academy Highschool

Updated on September 22, 2010
GarnetBird profile image

Gloria taught for many years, and also worked as a mental health group facilitator.

Sexual harassment can make even the strongest among us feel trapped.
Sexual harassment can make even the strongest among us feel trapped.

 When Carly Morasch entered her Senior year at Leonardtown Junior Naval Academy in Maryland, she did not sign up for sexual abuse.  She received it, anyway, in doses far and beyond what any adult could endure, let alone a 17 year-old girl. The year was 2005, when Carly's classic blonde good looks attracted the attention of her Battalion Director, Henry Barrington.  Barrington was fond of calling Carly into his office, where she would be ordered to stand at attention while he "licked her neck," and threatened to throw her down across the desk. "If you tell,"  he said, "It will be your word against mine."

Afraid and intimidated, Carly tried to avoid him.  He started text-messaging her with lurid details of what he wanted her to do to him. Phone calls followed, all with the same theme.  Carly's family noticed her personality changing-once outgoing and confident, she became reclusive and explosive, with a raging eating disorder that got her hospitalized.  When Mrs. Morasch probed further and found out her daughter's reasons for avoiding school, she contacted the FBI and a "sting operation" was promptly put into place.

Barrington was arrested in December of 2006, after booking a motel room where he was caught on tape eliciting the promise of sex with Carly. You would think that Carly's nightmare would end there and be put to rest, but another nightmare followed. The Academy's students rejected her and refused to eat at the same table with her.  If she pulled into the parking lot, their cars would be moved away, as though she had become dangerously contaminated.  All ranks stood behind the beloved Henry Barrington, and she became looked down upon and despised.

Very often the Teacher accused of sexual harassment is a popular figure on campus. The student who dares to tell the terrible truth pays a price for bravery and honesty.  They lose their friends, social standing and credibility. Needing support and a safe atmosphere for inner healing, the sexual abuse survivor is often thrown to the wolves of popular opinion and scorn.

Carly finished up with homeschooling, and slowly worked on gaining her self-esteem and confidence back. "Every day is a struggle for me. no matter where I'm at," she was quoted as saying, "I'm constantly being reminded of what happened."


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    • profile image

      James 6 years ago

      The whole truth was not being told...... She was NOT as innocent as she claimed

    • GarnetBird profile image

      Gloria Siess 6 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      Thank you for reading this--it has been largely ignored!

    • profile image

      Carly Morasch 6 years ago

      Hi GarnetBird, I am not sure how I came across your article but I'm truly thankful I did. Thank you for writing this.

    • goldie77 profile image

      goldie77 7 years ago from Scotland

      that's ridiculous Garnetbird-I don't understand people who talk like that-a child should be able to sit on an adult's lap. Thanks for sharing this story

    • profile image

      Garnetbird 7 years ago

      I agree--Carly, like so many others, myself included, become re-victimized after telling the truth. A few of my relatives commented that I invited the incest from my stepfather by "sitting in his lap too much."

    • ethel smith profile image

      Eileen Kersey 7 years ago from Kingston-Upon-Hull

      Dreadful. The behaviour of those people after this event should have received some form of punishment or bad publicity

    • habee profile image

      Holle Abee 7 years ago from Georgia

      What a terrible occurrence, but you did a great job telling it!

    • GarnetBird profile image

      Gloria Siess 7 years ago from Wrightwood, California

      THANK you for reading, valerie--this case, like many others, is very sad and compelling.

    • valeriebelew profile image

      valeriebelew 7 years ago from Metro Atlanta, GA, USA

      GarnetBird, this is a sad truth. People expect others to just forget about abuse, both emotional and physical, and often judge harshly when it can't be done that easily. People need to realize that we learn from our past. If what we have learned is mistrust, we can not merely will ourselves to trust again afterwards. great write. Up and awesome. (:v