Minnesota elementary school teacher and his husband die in a murder-suicide after teen boy reports they had sex with him
40-year-old elementary school teacher Aric Babbitt, and his husband Matthew Deyo, 36, accused by a 16-year-old he was mentoring of sexual molestation
The victim, the son of family friends, says the couple plied teenage victims with pornography, alcohol and marijuana in their home
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The boy who subsequently suffers a nervous breakdown, showed cops photo of himself naked with Babbitt
Before committing suicide, couple mailed note to family and friends stating that they “felt like they didn’t have an out and ending their lives was best for them,” Deyo fatally shoots Babbitt before taking his own life
Aric Babbitt and his husband Matthew Deyo, took their own lives in a murder-suicide rather than face the allegations of sexual molestation of minors
Minnesota couple Aric Babbitt and Mathew Deyo knew they were under investigation for allegations of sexual contact with teen boys before they left Minnesota around Aug. 16, though they hadn’t been charged with a crime.
A victim and his parents had come forward to the South St. Paul police to report “an ongoing sexual relationship” with Babbitt and Deyo, an affidavit for a search warrant filed in Dakota County District Court read. Babbitt and Deyo had refused to discuss the allegations with investigators who searched their home on August, 16.
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Nine days later, the couple was found dead on a beach thousands of miles away in Washington state. Deyo fatally shot Babbitt before taking his own life on Lopez Island in the San Juan Islands.
The 16-year-old victim told investigators he suffered a breakdown and went to the police Aug. 14 after the couple had preyed on him and other teens. Subsequently, the school district suspended Babbitt and opened its own investigation.
During the search of the couple’s home, officers discovered that a clock on the back of a toilet bathroom had a hidden camera. The investigators also uncovered a computer folder named “kiddies”.
Mathew Deyo – trigger man for the murder-suicide
The victim who submitted Polaroid pictures of himself naked with Babbitt, told investigators the 40-year-old teacher at Lincoln Center Elementary, who also happens to be friends with his family, began acting as his mentor when he came out to his family.
The teen said the couple plied him and other teen boys with pornography, alcohol and marijuana at their house, their cabin in rural Crow Wing County and even at a hotel in downtown Minneapolis during gay pride weekend.
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Babbit and Deyo had given the teen, gifts of underwear and yoga shorts. When the teen’s mother got curious, Babbitt told her the gifts were just “a gay thing”. The victim said the couple took him to a jazz concert and had sex with him in a hotel afterward. The boy told investigators he didn’t want “to do this, but felt unsure about how to say no,” according to the documents.
The district had placed Babbitt on administrative leave Aug. 17 after learning of the South St. Paul police investigation. According to South St. Paul School District Superintendent Dave Webb, the school district has identified even more possible victims during its review. The school district continues to conduct separate investigations.
“We continue to make counseling services available to both students and staff, and that won’t stop,” Webb said. “We sent out letters to families to make them aware of the situation.”
Police said a kayaker in Washington state found the bodies of Babbitt and Deyo Aug. 25 next to a suicide note on the beach in the San Juan Islands. They had borrowed a gun and ammunition from Deyo’s brother, telling him they were going camping and needed it for protection from bears.
The couple “felt like they didn’t have an out and ending their lives was best for them,” Babbitt’s sister said in a text message to family and friends, obtained by The St. Paul Pioneer Press.
“We received a letter from them in the mail yesterday,” she wrote. “We are all devastated and in a lot of pain.”