Ex-Oxbow Teacher In Court
Oxbow coach Brian Musty during an Oxbow girls lacrosse game in Chelsea in Spring 2011. (Valley News - Tris Wykes)
Chelsea — The woman police say was sexually assaulted as an Oxbow Union High School student by former teacher and coach Brian H. Musty said she is uncomfortable returning to the Upper Valley and trying to cope with her role in the ongoing case.
In a statement filed in Orange Superior Court, the woman, now 30, said she attends weekly counseling sessions and has had trouble building relationships due to the psychological scars from the assaults.
“I have been forced to deal with feelings of guilt, shame, embarrassment, trust issues and have had nightmares for years due to the emotional turmoil,” she wrote in the statement . “I distanced myself from my family and where I grew up due to the feelings associated with what happened and my inability to cope. I am now fearful of returning back to home as I will be judged by events that took place and that I turned Brian in. I have been unable to accept myself due to what happened, taking away from my ability to make and form healthy relationships.”
The woman wrote the comments on a form that victims are asked to file with the court in advance of making requests for restitution or offering testimony at a possible sentencing hearing. The woman grew up in Topsham, Vt., and left the Upper Valley years ago. As a general practice, the Valley News does not identify victims of alleged sex crimes.
Musty, 43, has pleaded not guilty to a charge of aggravated sex assault of a minor. The woman alleges the assaults occurred between 1997 and 1998 at Musty’s home in Topsham, Vt., and at the school. He has been released on $20,000 bail, and returned to Orange Superior Court yesterday for a brief scheduling hearing.
When answering a question about how Musty should be punished if convicted, the woman wrote:
“He needs to be held accountable for his actions with the laws that are in place to protect minors. He needs to never be in a position to hurt another girl. I would also like to see mandatory therapy as part of his sentencing.”
She said that she would not want to speak at a sentencing hearing, but would instead submit a written statement.
During yesterday’s hearing, lawyers acknowledged that the case is proceeding slower than anticipated. Musty’s attorney, Kerry DeWolfe, said that she had to take time off from work to deal with medical issues, and Orange County State’s Attorney Will Porter lost the only other prosecutor in his office when his former deputy, Michael Kainen, was named Windsor County State’s Attorney in March.
“These things came together to conspire against a lot of progress,” DeWolfe told Judge Timothy Tomasi.
Tomasi signed off on a schedule that calls for a trial in November.
According to a police affidavit, the victim left her parents’ home when she was 15 and moved in with Musty and his wife. She told investigators Musty sexually assaulted her repeatedly beginning in 1997 when she was 15. In Vermont, the age of consent is 16 years old.
The victim has retained an attorney, Pat Hayes of Lebanon, who attended the hearing yesterday. Hayes declined to comment after the hearing.
Musty had worked at the school since 1994 and coached Oxbow’s girls basketball, soccer and lacrosse teams.
He was fired in November. According to court documents, he has since found work with a landscaping company in New Hampshire.
Though he has been forbidden from leaving Vermont, Musty was granted exemptions by Tomasi to travel to Massachusetts to watch his daughter compete in college lacrosse games and attend her graduation ceremony, according to court documents.
Mark Davis can be reached at email@example.com or 603-727-3304.