A former Illinois “Teacher of the Year” has been charged with sexually assaulting a prospective student back in 1973 when he worked in the admissions office of Phillips Exeter Academy, an exclusive New Hamplshire prep school.
Arthur Peekel, 74, is a former Rolling Meadows High School teacher now living in Palatine, the Daily Herald is reporting.
Allegations against Peekel were first made public May 6 by the Boston Globe in a report on child sexual abuse in private schools in the Northeast.
University of North Carolina-Greensboro art professor Lawrence Jenkens told the Globe that he was a 14-year-old prospective Exeter student when Peekel fondled him.
Peekel was the 1991-92 Illinois Teacher of the Year.
He surrendered on Friday to the Exeter, N.H., police. The Exeter police said Peekel faces two misdemeanor charges of sexual assault. He was released on a $25,000 personal recognizance bond. Hhe agreed to have no contact with minors, and also to surrender his passport and sign a waiver of extradition.
Jenkens told the Daily Herald that he spent two nights at Exeter in 1973 as a prospective student. The first night he slept in a dorm. But on the second night, he said, Peekel told him there was no space in the dorms, so he offered Jenkens a cot at his apartment. The cot was next to Peekel’s bed, Jenkens said, and that’s where the sexual assault occurred.
Read the rest of the Daily Herald story here.