CONCORD — St. Paul’s School has settled a lawsuit brought by a former student who claimed he was sexually abused by a school administrator in the 1970s.
George Chester Irons, of Palm Beach, Fla., filed the suit last summer in Merrimack County Superior Court. It claimed that administrator Coolidge Mead Chapin took him and three other students to a New York brothel and forced the boys to have group sex with prostitutes while he watched and directed them.
“Chapin was at the school for 40-plus years. He was a sexual deviant on many levels. He victimized countless young boys. I was one of them,” Irons said in a phone interview on Friday. “I have suffered lifelong consequences owing to his abuse of me. The school never did anything to stop him for over four decades.”
Irons said that, as a result of the conclusion of the lawsuit, he was limited in what he could say. A suit filed simultaneously by another former student, Keith Mithoefer, is still ongoing.
“The Irons complaint has been resolved to our mutual satisfaction. The Mithoefer complaint remains open,” St. Paul’s said in a brief statement.
The private Concord preparatory school has faced several lawsuits in the wake of revelations about decades of sexual abuse of students.
An investigation conducted at the school’s request by the law firm Casner & Edwards confirmed sexual abuse allegations against 20 former faculty and staff. It also identified at least 67 victims.
“Sadly, in my opinion the majority of sexual abuse victims of St. Paul’s School have not yet come forward and it is my hope that every student that was abused by an SPS faculty member should come forward and hold the school accountable,” Irons said.
“Resolving lawsuits, or reaching a settlement, is never good enough. It does not heal you. But, it is the only public remedy available. There is no turning back the clock,” he added.