Two days ago the mainstream media was reporting that Hull Public Schools Superintendent Michael Devine had been put on leave by the School Committee without an explanation given. We became aware of the reasons why and published a blog explaining that he had been “grooming” a former male student in Hull, who is now 21 years old, by sending sexual text messages to him. There was little to no chatter about it in Hull Facebook groups, and the MSM still hasn’t written about why. When they do I’m sure we will receive no credit as always.
Although no laws were broken it seems rather unethical for a superintendent to use his position of authority to track students down after they graduate and advance on them sexually in ways they don’t reciprocate. He’s much older, he had a wife and two kids, and it’s an awkward and uncomfortable situation for someone of his stature to put young people through.
But people like this never do it just once, so we asked anyone who would like to come forward to email Turtleboy if he had done something similar to them. Right on cue we got this email from a former student of his at Norwell High School:
I have known Mike Devine probably since I was about 12 years old. I had two older sisters that went through Norwell High School before me so he got to know my family and myself pretty well. I attended NHS from 2005-2009 during which time Mr. Devine was my Dean of Students as well as my AP Government teacher senior year. He even wrote one of my college recommendations.
While I was in high school, I never experienced anything inappropriate from him. However, in 2012, I was 21 and going to school in DC and received an email or message from Mr. Devine, informing me he was going to be visiting DC for a conference or something. He asked if I’d like to meet up with him for some drinks, which didn’t strike me as unusual, and I thought it would be cool to catch up with an old teacher who I very much respected.
So we met up at a bar in downtown DC and caught up through some decently normal conversation during which he felt out my sexuality and also informed me he was no longer with his wife. After getting me a few drinks, we stepped out for a cigarette. At this point he started coming on to me, telling me how attractive I am and what not. He tried to make out with me, an advance which I rejected and then he continued to try and get me to go back to his hotel with him. Luckily, I actually had plans which I had already told him about so I was able to make an exit.
He repeatedly contacted me during the time he was in DC, trying to get me to come to his hotel. I was completely ignoring his messages but he didn’t stop so I eventually told him he made me extremely uncomfortable and I wanted nothing to do with him. At this point, he went into super apology mode and even went so far as to ask me to make sure everything that happened stayed between us. In the months and years after that, he would periodically contact me, despite my repeated requests for him to leave me alone. He would also message me on dating apps such as Grindr and even went so far as to make me feel guilty for “outing him” because I told my friends from Norwell about what had happened.
At the time all of this happened, it upset me greatly and made me feel a way I had never felt before. The feeling of having someone who I trusted and looked up to, behave in such a way was scarring. I have been tempted to tell my story before but always felt guilty or thought no one would take me seriously cause I know how highly people who have only encountered him as an educator think of him. Now that I know it wasn’t just me, I want to make sure he never works around young boys ever again. I am sending essentially this same message to the Hull School Committee now so they should have this information before they meet tomorrow. Let me know if you have any questions about my story or need me to do anything to verify my identity/story.
The emailer left his name, but I didn’t get his permission to use it yet so I’ve left it out. He seems pretty determined and unafraid at this point, now that we’ve published the first blog and he knows that there are other accusers. Again, no crime was committed here, but it shows an obvious pattern of grooming. Mr. Devine has repeatedly used his position of authority to establish relationships with young boys, waited until they turned 21, found them on social media, and then advanced on them sexually in a manner that was not reciprocated and left the young men feeling uncomfortable. Normally I think that homosexuality is bold, brave, and beautiful, but this particular gentleman is none of the above.
He certainly should not be given a superintendent job in another district.
I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that there are more former students where that came from. He did this in 2012, and again in 2020. You don’t just go cold turkey on grooming former students for 8 years. If you were a former student of his who was sexually harassed like this and put in an uncomfortable situation, email firstname.lastname@example.org and we can chat on or off the record.
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