The former Citadel summer camper whose 2007 complaint raised questions about serial molester Louis "Skip" ReVille's conduct at the school now says his contact with the former camp counselor was more serious than he originally let on.
During a recent deposition filed in a civil lawsuit surrounding the school's handling of allegations against ReVille, the victim said he was present in five pornography and masturbation sessions with ReVille in the counselor's dorm room.
During his interview with a school attorney in 2007, the former camper said he had been a victim of ReVille during only one incident on campus.
When asked by his attorney why he didn't reveal the full story to school officials at the time, the victim said it was because a lawyer for the military college questioned him in front of his parents.
"I was ashamed and embarrassed. I didn't want them to know that it happened more than one time," he said during a March 31 deposition.
The victim said he also kept quiet about that information when State Law Enforcement Division investigators interviewed him in 2012 because he was in denial at the time, according to his deposition.
He said he first revealed the information to his doctor about a year ago, the deposition stated.
The suits filed in 2012 target The Citadel, President John Rosa and Mark Brandenburg, the school attorney who was sent to Texas to interview the former camper in 2007. The school quietly shelved the complaint without notifying police following Brandenburg's interview and the information remained under wraps until ReVille's arrest on molestation charges in October 2011.
ReVille is now serving a 50-year prison sentence after he pleaded guilty in 2012 to molesting 23 boys in the greater Charleston area.
Mullins McLeod, who represents the former camper and two other ReVille victims, said he recently filed the deposition and others exhibits to oppose a request by Rosa and The Citadel to dismiss the case, which has not been slated for trial.
"The family I represent are eager for this dispute to be resolved on the merits and believe that transparency will ultimately bring justice for their children," McLeod said.
The Citadel's attorney, Dawes Cooke, said the next step is for Rosa and The Citadel to file a response in court.
"General Rosa is anxious for this matter to go before the court and will be filing his response very soon," Cooke said.
The former camper said he believed the school was going to report ReVille to authorities after he told Brandenburg on July 1, 2007, that ReVille had shown him pornography and masturbated with him on campus in 2002 when he was 14 years old.
"When I left this conversation, I was sure that I had reported it to an authority that was going to expose this man," he said in the deposition.
But school officials said Bradenburg made it clear to the former camper that he was not a law enforcement officer and the victim and his parents didn't followed up with the school on the investigation, according to court records.
When the victim found out ReVille had been arrested and had confessed to molesting dozens of young boys, his own life went into a downward spiral, according to the deposition.
Around October 2011, a friend sent him a link to a news article about ReVille's arrest, he said.
"I became numb and I fell to my knees, and my wife asked me what was going on and I had a fit," he said.
The former camper had developed nightmares at age 19 that ReVille would one day be arrested with an outrageous list of victims, according to his deposition.
"It was basically my worst nightmare fabricating and becoming my life, my world," he said. "It became impossible to sleep, and that lead to all sorts of different repercussions as far as my life is concerned."
The victim said he felt like a fool for believing he had done the right thing by telling the school about the abuse and believing The Citadel would do the right thing, the deposition stated.
The former camper said he believes the lawsuit and statements made by Rosa and others involved in the case have continued to victimize him.
School officials said the former camper's parents said they were concerned about their privacy after ReVille denied the allegations, and the information could not be corroborated.
Rosa maintains school officials conducted an investigation to the best of their abilities and denies any cover-up or conspiracy to suppress the allegations, according to court records.
But Jennifer Marie Hawley-Shiel, who worked within the president's office between 2002 and 2007, said there was a concerted effort to keep the report of sexual abuse within the office of the president, according to her deposition in the case.
When asked whether she had any doubt Rosa wanted the sexual abuse report to be kept under wraps, she said "it was very clear that - the term that was used about it was 'close hold.' I mean, only people that needed to know about it were supposed to know about it. That was it."
Shiel admitted, however, that she had heard the term "close hold" used in other matters as well.
"Any time that we had a situation develop that would - you know, that might end up in the press or that did end up in the press - the first thing ... always that was of consideration, was damage control," she stated.
Evidence presented by McLeod also includes an affidavit from Reville, provided at Perry Correctional Institution in Pelzer, where he is being held.
ReVille said he was working as a tutor at The Citadel when the former camper's complaint came to the school's contention, though the school has denied he was formally employed there at the time.
In his affidavit, ReVille said he lied and denied any inappropriate activity with the camper when confronted by Brandenburg and Joseph Trez, a former executive assistant to Rosa in April 2007.
He also said during that meeting Brandenburg and Trez told him they were going to conduct their own investigation and he should "lay low" and stay off campus.
"Col. Trez made it known to me that from the Citadel's standpoint, their main concern was to protect the institution," ReVille stated.
Brandenburg said he doesn't recall meeting with ReVille and also doesn't remember telling him to "lay low," according to the lawyer's deposition in the case.
The Citadel and Rosa have asked a judge to rule in their favor and toss out the camper's suit before it goes to trial. The judge, however, has not yet ruled on the request.
Reach Natalie Caula Hauff at 937-5594 or Twitter.com/ncaula.
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