A primary school aged girl took the stand in Kelowna court on March 16 to testify against her music teacher, who is on trial for charges of sexual assault of a child.
The teacher, Neil Nein-Nein Wong, has a history of criminal charges. In 2013, he was charged with secretly observing and recording nudity. Wong was working as a music teacher at Kelowna Secondary School at the time of the allegations.
In 2014 Wong received a conditional discharge, for the offences. After abiding to the terms of his probation Wong requested to have the file closed, and removed from his public record and sexual offender registry.
In this most recent case, the girl, whose name has been redacted due to a publication ban to protect her identity and will be referred to as Jane Doe, told the court that during her piano lessons, Wong would do things to her that she didn’t like.
She appeared by video from the Child Advocacy Center in Kelowna.
“He went under my clothing on my back and around to my belly and would move his hand up and down on my tummy and on my nipples… He would pick me up and hug me… he would touch my bum in a way I didn’t like,” said Doe.
She said that her dad took her to her first piano lesson and at that time Wong didn’t do anything. When Doe started going to the lessons by herself, Wong began assaulting her. Doe cannot remember the exact timeline of the alleged assaults.
“I would try to wiggle and get myself down but he wouldn’t let me.”
Doe said that initially she was nervous to tell an adult about the touching and the court heard that the alleged abuse took place over approximately eight months in 2021.
However, Doe said that she eventually felt brave enough to tell her mom.
“It’s not just about me. I’m worried about the other kids that are there.”
In May of last year, RCMP asked families of other students of Wong to contact them of any possible wrongdoing. Since then, no additional charges have been laid.
Doe’s mother was called as the first witness and said that her daughter told her about the alleged assault in January of 2022.
Wong has pled not guilty to the charge of sexual assault.
The trial will continue on March 17.
If you or someone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. See the sexual assault fact sheet provided by Victim Services and Crime Prevention. You can also call your local police or VictimLinkBC for information and support.