Victim in court says former Solon Middle School band teacher inappropriately touched her when she was 12

Updated: Sep. 23, 2020 at 11:42 AM EDT
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - The former Solon City School District band director was arraigned on Wednesday morning for an alleged sex crime involving a 12-year-old victim.

Edward Kline appeared in front of a Bedford Municipal Court judge for a charge of gross sexual imposition.

Former Solon schools band director charged, arraigned for sex crimes involving 12-year-old victim

Posted by Cleveland 19 News on Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Detectives began the investigation into Kline in June after accusations surfaced from former students and teachers that the then-band teacher.

The victim, who appeared in person in front of the accused and the judge during Wednesday’s court hearing, said she was a 12-year-old clarinet player in Kline’s eighth grade music class at the time of the alleged incident in September 2010.

Kline allegedly said the victim’s clarinet sounded out of tune and requested her to come to her office alone, according to the woman’s testimony on record.

The victim, referred to in court as Jane Doe, described the incident in detail. She said “one day he just decided my clarinet sounded out of tune against maybe 20 clarinetists. He told me to come to his office so I could perform the B flat warm up scale.”

She said she was told to face the door and play the clarinet for Kline.

That’s when, Jane Doe said, “I did as I was told and while playing the scale he groped the back of my thigh. My right one to be exact. I remember the day because I had a skirt on.”

The music teacher told the victim that he had a sensory issue and “had to touch stuff,” which is why he touched her, according to testimony.

The female victim said that was the only time the former teacher physically touched her, but she felt that she faced continued emotional abuse from Kline throughout her high school years until graduation. She said “as high school went on he was emotionally abusive I guess because he knew that what he did was wrong in 8th grade. He never turned me [when I started to] skip band a lot.”

Solon Detective Lieutenant Jamey Hofmann said up to 19 other alleged victims and witnesses have also been interviewed. The incidents they describe go back to at least 2008. The youngest alleged victim is 12 years old but many are high school aged.

Before teaching at Solon, Kline also taught at Hudson and Berea. He resigned from Solon in June.

At the time, Solon Schools sent this letter home to families:

19 News reached out to the district again after Kline’s court appearance Wednesday and they sent this statement:

Kline, a 50-year-old married man and father of two, was booked at the Solon Jail on Wednesday morning after turning himself in, according to police.

The judge set bond at $50,000 during Wednesday’s arraignment. Kline’s next appearance in municipal court is scheduled for Oct. 1, but investigators say additional charges in this case could be presented to Cuyahoga County prosecutors.

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