WILKES-BARRE — Suspended Hanover Area teacher Edward Evans testified this afternoon that he did not have a sexual encounter with a student, despite the young man’s allegation.
Testimony lasted one day in the trial before Luzerne County Michael Vough, with closing arguments set for tomorrow morning.
The jury trial of Evans, 34, of Hanover Township began this morning the former Hanover Area High School student testifying.
The man said he initially lied about a sexual encounter with Edward Evans to protect the teacher’s job and was told by him, “Don’t kiss and tell.”
Evans faces charges of institutional sexual assault and has been suspended without pay indefinitely.
The 19-year-old man, a 2014 graduate of Hanover Area, said he developed a friendship with “Eddie” Evans who was a hall monitor at the junior/senior high school in Hanover Township.
When asked by assistant district attorney Jenny Roberts why he befriended Evans, the man replied, “Because he’s a gay male and we have something in common.”
The two performed oral sex on each other and masturbated at Evans’ house on March 10, 2013, the man said. He told his guidance counselor at school the next day that Evans had given him “hickeys” on his neck, the man said. When asked by assistant district attorney Jenny Roberts why he told his counselor that, he replied, “to get the ball rolling.”
But when the guidance counselor reported it to her superiors, the man denied it and did the same when asked by a Hanover Township detective. It wasn’t until December of that year that the man admitted he and Evans had sex.
The initial lie became fodder for defense attorney William Ruzzo to question the credibility of the man.
“I lied to save his job,” the man told Ruzzo, explaining why he didn’t tell the truth at first.