Lehigh Valley

Sex assault charges filed against former Allentown Cadets director

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - The Lehigh County District Attorney's Office announced Tuesday that charges have been filed against a former youth drum corps director accused of sexually assaulting former employees.

District Attorney James Martin approved two felony accounts of sexual assault against 62-year-old George Hopkins, the former director of the Allentown Cadets. The Mechanicsburg resident surrendered Tuesday. He was arraigned and released on $50,000 unsecured bail ahead of a preliminary hearing tentatively scheduled for Dec. 4.

In May, two victims reported to authorities that they had been sexually assaulted by Hopkins, while they worked for the Youth Education in the Arts, the organization that governs the Allentown Cadets drum corps.

The first victim reported to investigators that Hopkins asked her to come to his Allentown home in 2008 for for YEA-related work, according to a news release from the district attorney's office. Hopkins, who was drinking a glass of wine, offered her a glass that had already been poured.

The victim reported feeling "peculiar" as though she was "floating on the ceiling." Hopkins allegedly began kissing the woman and taking off her clothes. She alleges he took her to his bedroom, where he undressed and sexually assaulted her. The victim alleges she repeatedly asked Hopkins to stop.

The second victim worked for YEA from 2006 to 2007 and met with Hopkins in 2010, when she was employed by another drum and bugle corps, according to prosecutors. They arranged to meet in an Allentown bar to discuss issues facing the two corps.

She told investigators that she was drinking a beer before excusing herself to use the bathroom. When she returned, she finished the beer and a shot of liquor that Hopkins encouraged her to drink. She described feeling like she was "moving in Jello," when she tried to stand up later.

Hopkins took the victim to his Allentown apartment, where he allegedly grabbed her, pulled her on top of him and ripped her shirt. The victim told investigators that Hopkins carried her to his bedroom, where he allegedly assaulted her. She reported telling him several times to stop.

Youth Education in the Arts earlier this year launched an investigation into Hopkins after about a dozen women accused him of sexual misconduct. In April, Hopkins resigned his position, but the YEA board rejected his resignation and fired him, citing the sexual misconduct allegations lodged against him.

Tune into 69News at 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. for more from reporter Jaccii Farris.


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