A former student at an exclusive boarding school claims its ex-headmaster groped her breasts and molested her for two years when she was 13-years old.
The student spoke anonymously as Jane Doe to accuse Williard “Bill” Wyman II of sexual abuse when she was at The Thacher School in Ojai, Calif.
“He would put his arms around me, hug me and call me his ‘special girl,’” the former pupil said.
“This unwanted attention quickly escalated with increased touching and eventually leading to groping of my breasts and body. He also had a pattern of stalking me when I made my way from my dorm to the horse stables, which was very unsettling and frightening to me.”
Jane Doe also alleged she also was molested by a school nurse who kept her in the infirmary overnight against her will as part of her nightmare at the school, where she was enrolled for two years from 1982.
The complaint comes a day after socialite Paris Hiltion spoke out about a similar experience she went through at Utah’s Provo Canyon School, where she claimed staff would forcefully “perform cervical exams” on her and other female students late at night, adding it was “definitely sexual abuse.”
Doe, now 53, is now suing The Thacher School for sexual harassment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, sexual battery and negligence.
She said complaints she made at the time were dismissed and she was told not to return to the school after her sophomore year.
“I can’t help thinking how my life and the lives of other victims might have been different had Thacher taken my complaints seriously, investigated and ultimately fired Bill Wyman back in 1983. A decade or more of abuse could have been prevented and countless victims could have been spared,” she said during a virtual press conference on Wednesday with her attorneys Gloria Allred and Christina Chung.
Wyman died from lung cancer in 2014. The Thacher School’s board of trustees had released a 91-page report in 2021 which detailed sexual misconduct by school employees against students dating back to the 1980s.
The report was compiled independently by a legal company who interviewed more than 120 former students, parents and current or past faculty members and staffers at the school.
However, when the report was released, some alumni and school supporters didn’t feel its findings were complete.
Allred said of her client: “Her goal was and is to make Thacher accountable for their failure to protect her from childhood sexual abuse at Thacher and the school’s failure to respond appropriately when she reported to the school the misconduct that she suffered when she was a student there.”
Allred, added that while the school promised a supplemental to the Munger report, it never materialized.
When approached for comment the school said: “Thacher is committed to the safety and well-being of all its students—past, present, and future.
“Given that this matter is now the subject of litigation, it would be inappropriate to comment further at this time.”