May 24, 2019
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Husband testifies for ex-teacher in Maine sex assault trial

Shawn St. Hilaire | Seacoast Online
Shawn St. Hilaire | Seacoast Online
The trial of former Kennebunk High School Teacher Jill Lamontagne, who is accused of having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old student in 2017, is underway in York County Superior Court.

ALFRED, Maine — The husband of the former Kennebunk High School teacher accused of sexually assaulting a student testified in court Wednesday that he was aware his wife was trying to help the student academically and he knew about the phone calls between his wife and the student.

Steve Lamontagne took the stand in York County Superior Court Wednesday as the first witness called by attorney Scott Gardner, representing former KHS teacher Jill Lamontagne. Lamontagne is facing six Class C felony counts of gross sexual assault of an individual whom she had “instructional, supervisory, or disciplinary authority over,” two Class D misdemeanor counts of unlawful sexual contact and six Class D misdemeanor counts of sexual abuse of a minor. Lamontagne is alleged to have engaged in sex acts a number of times from February to May 2017 with the then 17-year-old student.

The trial began on Monday in York County Superior Court. On Tuesday, a cyber forensic and cyber security expert, Detective Fred Williams of the Saco Police Department, testified that there were more than 80 telephone calls and nearly 100 text messages over a six month period between Lamontagne’s cell phone number and the student. Williams returned to the stand Wednesday testifying that the 86 call logs between Lamontagne’s cell phone and the student were duplicated, and that there were actually 43 calls between the two.

When asked if he was aware his wife was working with the victim to help him scholastically, Steve Lamontagne said “Yes, very much so. It was a topic of conversation.”

He said he was aware of the phone contact between his wife and the student, and said she would often discuss the phone calls with him.

Steve Lamontagne testified that he worked as a electrician just five miles away from the family’s home in West Kennebunk and would frequently return home at different times during the day “to pick up tools and things.” He told jurors that he did not tell his wife when he was going to do so.

“Do you recall a time when she left home to attend to (the student)?” Gardner asked Steve Lamontagne.

He testified that she did so on a Sunday, when her parents were also visiting their home.

“I didn’t think anything of it,” Steve Lamontagne said. “I told her, ‘Do what you have to do to help the kid.’”

Steve Lamontagne also testified that he knew his wife gave the student a ride in her car that day.

He testified that he did not see any change in his wife’s routine or demeanor in the winter and spring of 2017.

Prosecutor Justina McGettigan asked Steve Lamontagne if he knew his wife’s passcode on her cellphone, and he said he did. He testified that he could use her phone, though he didn’t often.

“I could use it to make a call if it was right there, or might answer it if she was in the shower or something,” he said.

McGettigan showed him a print out of the text messages between his wife’s phone and the alleged victim.

“Do you recall looking at your wife’s phone and seeing these messages?” McGettigan asked.

“No,” Steve Lamontagne said.

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