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Williamsport High School principal arrested on felony sex assault charges

PHOTO WILLIAMSPORT SCHOOL DISTRICT

A principal at the Williamsport Area High School was arrested Tuesday on more than 30 felony charges for having a long-term sexual relationship with a male student who was under his guidance and authority, state police alleged.

Roger Weaver Freed, 34, of 1131 Pleasant Hill Road, Cogan Station, was charged with 30 counts of indecent sexual contact with a student, one count each of sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, corrupting the morals of a minor and three misdemeanor counts of furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Freed was set to take over as head principal of WAHS, moving up from his position as ninth-grade principal.

The relationship between Freed and the student began in the 2014-15 school year when the student “approached him after noticing how other students confided in him,” the lead investigator said in an affidavit, adding that the student felt he “could lean on Freed for emotional support.”

The student told police that, at the time, “he trusted Freed ‘like an older brother,'” the affidavit stated.

Later that same school year, “Freed volunteered to drive the student to various locations throughout the county for one-on-one conversations,” some of which became sexual in nature, police said.

Freed placed “his hands on the student’s shoulders, comforting him, which (eventually) turned to more intimate massaging” by the following year (2016), police were told.

According to the student, by 2017, his and Freed’s relationship became intimately sexual in nature, police said.

One night, while the two were “secluded in darkness” in Freed’s vehicle in the city’s Newberry neighborhood, the two engaged in sexual acts, investigators alleged.

“Freed stressed the importance of not telling a soul and that their relationship was private,” court documents stated.

“Freed related that it was OK for bros to please each other,” police said.

“‘You promise not to tell anyone. I could lose my job over this,'” the student quoted Freed as saying, police said.

After that first alleged sexual encounter, the two engaged in sexual acts “four to five times a week throughout the next two years (2017-2018), the student told investigators.

It was alleged that Freed and the student traveled together out of town, staying together at a hotel where they “smoked cigars and drank red wine that Freed provided,” the affidavit stated.

The two had sexual relations in the hotel room, police alleged.

The relationship between the two, which continued as the student went on to college, ended in April 2022, police said. The criminal charges were filed Monday.

Following his arraignment before District Judge Christian Frey, he was released on $175,000 intense supervised bail in which he will be required to wear an ankle monitor at all times. He is also prohibited from having any contact with the victim or unsupervised contacts with any minors.

Freed was hired as a math teacher at Williamsport Area High School in 2011 and became secondary special education coordinator for the district in 2015. Freed was also assistant principal at Jackson Primary, and most recently served as ninth-grade principal, according to the school district’s website.

A spokesperson for the Williamsport Area School District said the district was not providing comment at this time.

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