Teacher charged with sex assault of teen

UPDATE 1:45 p.m. — Wilton Superintendent Kevin Smith said in a letter sent out around 1 this afternoon that Timothy Leonard, arrested Tuesday night for sexual assault of a Trumbull teen, “has been suspended pending an investigation.”

“This news comes as an incredible shock to our entire school community," the superintendent said. "Dr. Leonard has worked in Wilton for many years and had developed a very positive reputation as a teacher. If these allegations are true, Dr. Leonard violated the trust of all in the Wilton Public Schools and throughout our community.”

The school has mobilized mental health staff to help students, staff or families that may need it.

Original story — A man who is a  middle school teacher in Wilton and a teacher at Sacred Heart University, has been charged with having a sexual encounter Tuesday with an underage Trumbull male he met through an online dating app.

Police found Timothy Leonard, 37, of Southbury and a 14 year-old Trumbull teen sitting in a black Jeep Cherokee, parked in a secluded area off of the cinema parking lot on Quarry Road, around 7:30 p.m. Feb. 10.

Police said both appeared to be nervous when police approached the vehicle.

“The passenger initially stated he was 18,” police said, “however he appeared much younger and it was later determined that he was a 14 year-old Trumbull resident.” Police said during the course of speaking to the pair it was determined they had engaged in intimate contact while parked in the vehicle. Leonard said that he met the victim on an online dating app and that he likes college aged boys, stating, “that’s my thing.”

Leonard denied knowing the victim was 14 and said he would not have gotten involved with him if he knew. Leonard also told police he is a seventh grade teacher in Wilton and teaches at Sacred Heart University. The Wilton schools confirmed he is a teacher at Middlebrook School there.

Leonard was charged with risk of injury to a minor and sexual assault in the fourth degree. He posted a $10,000 bond. Police say the investigation is ongoing.