Concord High teacher facing sex assault charges held without bail in Massachusetts

  • Concord High School teacher Howie Leung stands inside Newton District Court in Newton, Mass., for his arraignment Wednesday on two counts of aggravated rape of a child and one count of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14. Eileen O’Grady / For the Monitor

  • Primo “Howie” Leung, 36, of Concord

For the Monitor
Published: 4/17/2019 3:56:15 PM

When he was a teacher at Rundlett Middle School, Howie Leung wrote a letter to a 14-year-old student that police said was “very expressive and emotional.”

“I love you,” Leung wrote, and admitted, “I was pressuring you and you didn’t want to let me down.”

The letter was written to a former Concord student who Leung is accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting at Concord’s middle school and at the Fessenden School in Newton, Mass., a five-week boarding camp for girls and boys ages 9 to 15. The letter was uncovered as part of an investigation by police in Concord and Newton.

Primo “Howie” Leung, 36, of Concord, a Concord High School teacher, was arraigned in Newton District Court on Wednesday on charges including two counts of aggravated rape of a child, one count of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 and one count of indecent assault and battery on a child over 14.

Leung stood silently in a glass enclosure to the left of the judge’s bench, where he was guarded by a court officer, as his lawyer Ghazi Al-Marayati entered a not guilty plea on his behalf.

Judge Mary Heffernan ordered Leung held without bail pending a health evaluation. Court documents indicate that Leung attempted suicide on March 28 after learning of the criminal investigation against him. He spent time at Concord Hospital before his arrest on April 3.

An internal investigation of Leung by the Concord School District began in December 2018 after he was allegedly observed engaging in “inappropriate behavior” with a high school senior, according to the police report. As of last week, he remained on paid administrative leave.

Leung’s alleged victim, who is now 17, said she was sexually assaulted by Leung many times over a period of several years. She reported being inappropriately touched by Leung on several occasions at Rundlett while he was a special education teacher there, both on school property and in his vehicle when he gave her rides home.

The report says much of the abuse occurred while she was an unpaid helper at the Fessenden School, which provides an overnight English Language Learning summer program to help students gain skills in speaking, writing and reading English.

The victim said Leung assaulted her repeatedly in his office, in the tunnels of the school buildings where the campers were playing tag, and in her own dorm room, assaulting her approximately 20 times over the course of two summers, the report said.

In a conversation with a Concord police officer, the victim stated the encounters with Leung made her feel “degraded” and “less than other people,” but felt she could not report it because Leung is married with two children, according to the police report.

Leung is scheduled to appear in court again Friday following his health evaluation.

Eileen O

Eileen O'Grady is a Report for America corps member covering education for the Concord Monitor since spring 2020. O’Grady is the former managing editor of Scope magazine at Northeastern University in Boston, where she reported on social justice issues, community activism, local politics and the COVID-19 pandemic. She is a native Vermonter and worked as a reporter covering local politics for the Shelburne News and the Citizen. Her work has also appeared in The Boston Globe, U.S. News & World Report, The Bay State Banner, and VTDigger. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Northeastern University and a bachelor’s degree in politics and French from Mount Holyoke College, where she served as news editor for the Mount Holyoke News from 2017-2018.

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