|Boy Sex Victim:
"Gilpin Abused Me"
A man tells NewsManatee in this exclusive two-part series of his alleged
sexual abuse by former Manatee County Ass't. Principal Joseph Gilpin
BRADENTON, Florida [NMT] -- Yesterday, Harvey René Paul told his story of how he met Joseph Gilpin and what led to his initial indoctrination of "getting close" to Gilpin. Today, in Part Two of his story, Harvey René Paul tells what happened to him in Gilpin's house, the next phase of the alleged sexual indoctrination. He also tells us graphically what allegedly happened in that house and how it affected him the rest of his life.
"Mr. Gilpin invited myself and my older brother to his house for an overnight visit. We were no sooner through the door when he offered us something to drink. I am not sure what the libation was (usually Bacardi and Coke), but it was certainly something off limits for adolescents. Feeling like big shots, we drank with him. My brother got so drunk that he burned a hole in his couch while playing with a candle. Mr. Gilpin put my staggering brother to bed in one room, and guided me into the other room. Evidently, he and I were going to share a bed. I went to bed wearing only my underwear, and cannot recall whether he had his on to start or not. Regardless, in short order, we were naked. I will not describe what went on after that.
Suffice it to say that you cannot overuse your imagination. These types of things occurred with great frequency over the course of his time in Maine. Today I would think it strange that a not small container of Vaseline was on the night stand, but at the time I thought nothing of it.
The house was a small beachfront cottage of less than 1000 square feet, with the kitchen directly in front of the door from the drive, which was to the left of the house as one drove in. There was a waist high dividing wall between the kitchen and the living room, on the left of the front door. The bedrooms were at the opposite corners, both left and right as you stand in the doorway. There were French doors that opened from the living room onto the beach, facing Monument and Wood Islands. The heating system consisted of a below-floor unit that had a large grate, situated in the living room near the bedrooms. I thought this was neat as I had never seen one before, and hence never forgot it.
Whenever we were at Mr. Gilpin's house, there was alcohol involved. Never was there not alcohol served when there were overnight visits. We drank Whiskey Sours, Tom Collins, beer (not very often since it wasn't as well received by children, as it was too bitter), A[lm]aden, Mateus, and Lancers wine, and most usually, rum and Cokes. While on occasion there were multiple children there, I was almost always there by myself. Once he made his choice, he made sure that I was there alone. This was a big ego stroke for me, to have the sole attention of this dynamic new priest. To this day, I cannot imagine if my parents had come down to check up on me later in the evening. I wish they had, if only to end what I was going through, but I think the shame I would have felt would have been as traumatic, with its own long term consequences. I know that he got other children drunk. I remember through the hazy eyes of a teenager; a party at the cottage of another kid. This was at Kennebunk Pond, and involved a half dozen or so other children. This was another overnight stay, and the cottage was filled with drunk children. I can't remember whether I went to bed with him that night. I do know that the boy, whose mother owned the camp, became Mr. Gilpin's favorite after I put a stop to his abuse of me. This man unfortunately committed suicide as an adult. Had I told somebody what I knew, would this have happened?
Last year, I contacted another survivor of Joseph Gilpin's abuse. This man cried as he confirmed that he, too, had been abused by him. He told me that I was the only person he had ever told of the abuse, and he immediately called his wife into the room in order to share his story with her. She said that he didn't have to tell her, that she always knew it without his having said anything.
Another man also has admitted that Gilpin attempted to seduce him. He gave me a statement detailing what happened on that occasion. He was also given alcohol, and the incident ended when the man, then a boy, jumped up demanding to leave. The man came forward when this story first broke back in January. He will not hesitate to attest to his incident, and I have a written statement from him.
Now for the rough part of my tale: the sexual acts that happened and how I survived them.
The abuse included oral sex, both ways, mutual masturbation and anal sex. I remember him putting his penis in me on two occasions, and I protested from the pain, so he removed his penis and rubbed it between my legs to climax. I had anal sex with him frequently. I also cannot say if he ever had an anal climax in me on other occasions; I could very well have been so drunk that I was unresponsive and unaware. There was always alcohol involved.
I have been married three times in my life. I've had no close friends. I've had drug and alcohol issues throughout my life, as well as anger management issues. I vet everyone from initial contact, and afterwards. I like to say that I 'don't miss much' and it seems to be true. I've had counseling at least three times in my life in order to weather relationship breakups. I came very close to killing myself on 2 different occasions. I've pretty much resigned myself to the fact that I have personality flaws which prevent me from having long term relationships like the rest of my brothers and sisters. I have come to understand why I am the way I am, and am reluctant to put anyone else through my version of a relationship.
My purpose in telling this story is to ensure that even though Mr. Gilpin may not have been convicted in a court of law, his access to children needs to end. Simply because the statutes of limitations prevent criminal prosecution does not mean that there aren't credible witnesses to his actions. Simply because we did not jump right up at the beginning to proclaim in a proud fashion that we had been abused by this monster doesn't mean that our story is 'garbage.' I would be willing to sit down for a polygraph with Mr. Gilpin doing the same. I have no doubt that I will pass with flying colors, as would a few other victims. Ask him if he would be willing to do the same.
I feel that this is a chilling story that needs to come out in order to open the door to others who may have been abused."
Harvey René Paul
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