William Shupe, Chief of Police
20 Court Street
Exeter, NH 03833
For Immediate Release
Friday, May 13, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Exeter Police Department Charges Former Phillips Exeter Academy Employee with Sexual Assault
EXETER — Chief William Shupe reports that a former employee of Phillips Exeter Academy today turned himself into the Exeter Police Department to face charges in connection with sexual assault allegations made by a former student at the school.
ARTHUR PEEKEL, AGE 74, OF PALATINE, Ill. was arrested and charged with two counts of Sexual Assault (Class A Misdemeanors). He was processed and bailed on $25,000 personal recognizance bail with conditions to surrender his passport, sign a waiver of extradition and have no contact with minors. His arraignment is scheduled for July 5, 2016 at the 10th Circuit Court Brentwood District Division.
An Exeter Police Department investigation indicates that, between November and December of 1973, while employed at Phillips Exeter, PEEKEL allegedly sexually assaulted a prospective student at the school.
The statute of limitations was tolled by the fact that PEEKEL moved out of state shortly after the alleged incidents.
“We allege that the suspect violated the trust placed in him by a prospective student by committing multiple acts of sexual assault,” Chief Shupe said. “We salute the bravery of the victim in coming forward to report this incident to us, allowing us to bring this case forward.”
The Exeter Police Department also seeks to keep members of the public informed about the progress of investigations into other allegations of sexual misconduct at Phillips Exeter Academy.
On April 4, Phillips Exeter Academy turned over a number of complaints of alleged misconduct. These individual complaints ranged from third person reports with unknown victims to allegations against named faculty having inappropriate relationships with students. Since that time, additional reports have been made to either Phillips Exeter Academy and turned over to the Exeter Police Department or directly to the police department.
At this time, numerous cases have been closed by the Exeter Criminal Investigation Division for various reasons, including unfounded rumors and cases where the alleged victims are choosing not to come forward at this time. The closed cases involve alleged events that range from the 1960s to 2014, and not all of the cases involve employees of the school.
Other cases remain open and investigations are ongoing.
The Exeter Police Department continues to ask anyone who has information about misconduct or abuse, or who may be a victim, or who has any concerns or questions to contact Exeter Police Captain Michael Munck directly at 603-773-6144 or email him at [email protected].
“The Exeter Police Department takes any allegations concerning the sexual abuse of children very seriously, and we want to assure the community that we are conducting a complete and impartial investigation into each claim,” Chief Shupe said. “We are grateful to those who have had the courage to come forward and we remain thankful for the support of the public as we conduct these investigations.”