Sex assault trial set for former teacher

Benjamin Hodgdon II

Benjamin Hodgdon II

ELLSWORTH — The trial of a Tremont man accused of sexually assaulting a young girl while employed as a teacher at the Tremont Consolidated School is scheduled to begin Monday, according to Hancock County District Attorney Matthew Foster.

Benjamin Hodgdon II, 47, is facing four counts of gross sexual assault, two counts of unlawful sexual contact and two counts of sexual abuse of a minor for his alleged molestation of a female student during the 1999-2000 school year. At the time, Hodgdon was a sixth-grade teacher and coached cross-country at the school.

The trial is expected to take six days, Foster said. Court documents show Hodgdon could call more than 30 witnesses to testify.

Hodgdon’s case was on the trial docket for August, November and January but was continued each time because the court could not schedule enough time for the trial.

The allegations of abuse surfaced in July 2013, when the complainant met with a detective to report she had been sexually assaulted by Hodgdon numerous times when she was 13 and 14 years old and a student at the Tremont school.

According to court records, she recorded a conversation she had with Hodgdon in September 2012 where he reportedly is heard pleading with her not to go to police about the alleged sexual abuse.

As a result of the accusations, Hodgdon was interviewed by Detective Steve McFarland of the Hancock County District Attorney’s Office. During the interview, Hodgdon reportedly admitted “he had gotten too close to [the complainant] and had crossed a boundary that should have been kept between teacher and student,” court records state.

Hodgdon also told the detective he had crossed another “boundary” a couple of years later when he engaged in a sexual act with a girl who was a high school senior, according to court records.

A Hancock County grand jury indicted Hodgdon on the charges in April 2014.

Hodgdon was a teacher at the Tremont school from Sept. 1, 1991, to April 2, 2003, when he submitted a letter of resignation.

“I am sadly disappointed that I was unable to fulfill my obligations in a way that would allow me with good faith to continue teaching,” he stated in the letter.

Hodgdon also coached sports at Mount Desert Island High School.

If convicted of gross sexual assault, Hodgdon faces up to 30 years in prison and/or a $50,000 fine.

Mark Good

Mark Good

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Mark Good

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