“He asked me if I masturbated”, the strange interrogations of the former headmaster of Saint-Jean-de-Passy

Saint-Jean-de-Passy school group (illustration) – ALI / SIPA

  • Daniel Chapellier, who had taken the head of the Catholic school group Saint-Jean-de-Passy is indicted for “sexual assault” on a schoolboy.
  • He firmly denies the facts and resigned to prepare his defense.
  • 20 Minutes contacted three former students of Daniel Chapellier from another very select Parisian establishment, Stanislas, which he directed from 2003 to 2015. They report inappropriate comments.

Last spring, the Saint-Jean-de-Passy school group, in the very chic 16th arrondissement of Paris, found itself in turmoil after the shattering departure of its former director, François-Xavier Clément, questioned for practices muscular managers, flirting with harassment. While the preliminary investigation has just been closed, it is in a scandal of a whole other magnitude that this Catholic establishment has taken today: Daniel Chapellier, the interim director since this summer, was indicted Thursday for “sexual assault” on a college student.

At the beginning of February, the parents of this 14-year-old student filed a complaint after the latter told them that he had been the target of inappropriate gestures and words during an interview in the office of Daniel Chapellier, 71 years of which more than 50 spent in Catholic education. According to his story, he would have asked her in particular to perform oral sex. Charges that firmly deny the person who indicated, through the voice of his lawyer, Me Yassine Yakouti, to have lodged a complaint for “slanderous denunciation”. “My client strongly denounces the accusations made against him,” insists his counsel, specifying that, since the media coverage of the case, this figure of the Catholic teacher has received “thousands” of testimonies of support from former students.

“I dodged the question”

Contacted by 20 Minutes, three former students of another very select Parisian establishment – Stanislas, directed by Daniel Chapellier from 2003 to 2015 – nevertheless report inappropriate comments. Like Arthur, in his thirties today, who left the establishment in 3rd, in 2006. The young man claims to have been summoned to the principal’s office three times during his college, always for disciplinary matters. He is notably regularly criticized for “talking to girls” at recess, which was, he assures, “frowned upon” in this establishment, some of the classes of which are not mixed. “Around 13 or 14 years old, Daniel Chapellier asked me if I was masturbating,” he recalls. I do not remember the specific context, but I dodged the question. He recalls, however, not being “particularly surprised” when the question arose amid scolding. “I had heard other students talk about it before. “

Hugo Broyer, either, did not fall from the clouds when in the course of a conversation on his notes, in 5th, Daniel Chapellier questioned him. “We were almost all entitled to it,” says the one who left the establishment in 2015, after his second. We talked about it with our friends, we prepared answers so as not to be caught off guard. Nearly ten years later, the young man remembers this interview perfectly. “He knew I had an iPod I could go to on the internet and started to wonder, under cover of the drop in my grades, what site I was going to, if I knew what I was doing teenagers at night . It was very inquisitive, I knew I had to deny everything altogether because at Stanislas sexuality is a huge taboo. “Beyond the reprimands, the schoolboy fears losing the good image that Daniel Chapellier has of him. Because years later, Hugo Broyer keeps fond memories of this director, “strict but benevolent”, particularly involved in the success of his students.

No inappropriate gesture

None of the three students questioned retains a traumatic or painful memory of this questioning, however so intimate. “Today, you ask me the question, I do not find that normal, insists C., 27 years old. But at the time, we laughed about it among ourselves, we had no point of comparison. All three specify that at no time did they observe inappropriate gestures or even words suggesting an “invitation”. According to their account, the questions about masturbation were more of the order of “blame.” “It was the style we have behavioral problems because we masturbate”, insists Arthur. Of the three, he is the only one to have a bad memory of Daniel Chapellier. “As much as this meeting did not mark me, I remember the moral harassment and the humiliations. He kept telling me, for example, that I was a failure because my parents were divorced. “

Several similar testimonies circulated this weekend on social networks. Other students, on the other hand, claim to have never heard of such “interrogations” conducted by Daniel Chapellier. “Many students are afraid of harming him, or even of harming Stan’s image,” said C. The principal’s lawyer refused to comment on this point, simply stating that the file did not include any testimony of this nature. “My client has neither to answer to media justice, nor to that of social networks” insisted Me Yassine Yakouti. The principal resigned from his duties in order to prepare his defense.

Cited in another case

This is not the first time that the name of Daniel Chapellier has been associated with a scandal of a sexual nature. In 2013, while at the head of Stanislas, he recruited a music teacher at the boys’ college, also director of the institution’s boarding school. In 2018, three years after the retirement of Daniel Chapellier, the man was finally dismissed for having consulted child pornography sites on his professional computer. As revealed The world, former students have also lodged a complaint against him and a preliminary investigation was opened at the end of 2020 for “sexual assault by a person in authority, aggravated violence and moral harassment”. The former director, who had already worked with the respondent in the 1990s, was not worried, however.

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