A second woman has come forward claiming that a suburban Catholic high school teacher repeatedly harassed her while she was a student.
In a video posted on Youtube, Emma Seavey said she was “subjected to daily sexual harassment” by John Quinn in his American History class at Fenwick High School.
“Mr. Quinn would go out of his way to compare me to a marginalized woman and ask me what it would be like if I was sexually assaulted by him,” said Seavey, a 2015 graduate.
“In addition to the routine verbal harassment, Quinn ushered me out of class, wrapping her arms tightly around me, and on at least one occasion slipped her hand under my bra strap, over my blouse. “, she continued.
Seavey reported the behavior to school officials after Quinn asked her mother at a parent-teacher conference if she could babysit her children, according to her video.
“I’m sharing this story because I think it’s incredibly important to see his actions for what they were, calculated attempts to get close to me,” Seavey said.
Seavey said she was removed from her class and advised to avoid her class, and the two parties were instructed not to have contact or discuss the matter.
“While I kept my end of the bargain, Quinn didn’t,” Seavey said.
“[He] would do everything possible to be as close to me as possible in public spaces,” she said. “In my senior year, he was choosing his position as moderator during mass, so he was always at the end of my row.
“Quinn’s routine of stalking me didn’t end when I graduated from Fenwick. Quinn spent her time asking my younger brothers and my fiancé’s younger brother how I was doing, where I was living and if I was still in a relationship with my current fiancé. I should also add that he didn’t have any of these students in his class, so he went out of his way to find them in the hallways,” she said. for follow-up.
Seavey’s allegations come a week after another former student shared a video about her experiences with Quinn, who is the brother of former Illinois Governor Pat Quinn.
Helen Quinn Pasin, who is unrelated to Quinn, said in the video that he would touch her and ask about her love life.
“I decided to come forward in this way because I believe Mr. Quinn doesn’t think he’s doing anything wrong. That’s how narcissistic abusers work,” Pasin said.
Pasin said she filed a police report with Oak Park police in September 2021, outlining the 2013 and 2014 incidents.
Oak Park Police told NBC 5 that the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office determined the evidence did not support a felony, and while a misdemeanor battery may have been warranted, the limitation period has expired.
In the report, however, the reporting officer also noted “a previous case from DCFS regarding Quinn.”
In the case, filed in May 2021, Oak Park Police learned of an allegation of misconduct dating back to 1990. At the time, the student was 18 years old. However, the police could not reach him and the case is ongoing.
Quinn, through his brother Thomas, released the following statement, denying all allegations made against him.
The accusation that John Quinn subjected Emma Seavey to sexual harassment is
false. John never sexually harassed Ms. Seavey or any other Fenwick student,
anytime or anywhere.
John has always put the interests of the students first and has always been involved in
Fenwick’s internal processes for responding to student concerns. He intends to
continue to do so in the future.
John is looking forward to returning to the classroom and continuing in the profession
to which he devoted his entire career.
Quinn has been suspended and is currently on administrative leave while a third-party investigation continues, according to Fenwick.
In her video, Seavey said she was stepping forward to bring justice to herself and those “subjected to similar abuse.”
“I’m not sharing my story to conclude. Instead, I’m reclaiming my voice, which Fenwick has tried to silence for so long,” she said.
Seavey has been documenting his experiences for years.
In 2018, she contacted the school again to expose her “reluctance” in handling her situation, citing that even five years after graduation, she still has emotional reactions “bordering on attacks from panic” upon hearing Quinn’s name.
Then, in 2021, when Fenwick sent out a community alert about allegations against a priest at the school, she contacted school officials again to report the “threatening and predatory behavior”.
In an email response, the school said Quinn was given notice and a “last chance ultimatum.”
“Emma’s story reassures my decision to withdraw from Fenwick’s internal investigative process. Since hers was entirely unsuccessful,” said Pasin, who said she never reported her experiences with Quinn to school at the time.
Since sharing her story, Pasin said 30 former students have come forward to share similar experiences.
Most wish to remain anonymous, but Pasin shares their testimonies on Youtube.
“He’s been off several times and he always comes back,” Pasin said.
“For some reason, Fenwick has protected it for many, many years. So releasing a video on Youtube seemed like my only effective way to reach them,” Pasin said.