Police Charge Former Dartmouth Teacher in Connection with 2021 Sexual Assault

Halifax Regional Police have formally charged Matthew Douglas Moriarty, a former languages teacher at Woodlawn High School in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia in connection with a 2021 sexual assault. The investigation, initiated in August of 2023 following a report of the alleged assault, culminated in charges of sexual assault and sexual exploitation against Moriarty, 42. The survivor, a youth at the time of the incident, was Moriarty’s student. Moriarty was arrested on November 9, 2023, at the Halifax Regional Police headquarters on Gottingen Street.

Previous Charges

This recent incident is not Moriarty’s first encounter with the law. In July 2023, he faced charges of voyeurism related to alleged incidents at the Abenaki Aquatic Club. The charges involved the recording of five women and a youth in the club’s washrooms between July 18 and 20, 2023.

The Halifax Regional Centre for Education announced that Moriarity was placed on leave after the Voyeurism charges were announced. [i]

Your Legal Options After Sexual or Institutional Abuse

At Wagners, we’ve met survivors of sexual or institutional abuse who find it extremely difficult to share their experiences, even with a lawyer. We have a team that is professional and compassionate so you can rely on their experience to explain your legal options and provide the assistance you need to fight for your fair compensation. Abuse survivors can trust us to use the information they share to ensure the person or institution responsible are brought to justice. We take the time to evaluate the specifics of your case and advise on the best legal option to help you receive the monetary compensation you need to recover from the abuse you endured.

File criminal charges: If you take this option, you will not get monetary compensation. Investigations will be done, and the accused will be arrested if sufficient evidence is found. If the defendant is found guilty, he or she could face punishment like imprisonment.

Civil lawsuit: In this case, we pursue the case on behalf of the survivor in civil court. If found at fault, the assailant will be required to pay monetary compensation, which would assist the survivor to recover from the abuse.

Class action lawsuit: It is also possible to file a class action lawsuit against an assailant who assaulted several people. The group of survivors can come together to collectively file a class action suit against the person or institution that was responsible for the assault or abuse.

Regardless of when it occurred, if you have been the victim of sexual abuse by a teacher or school staff in the Maritimes, contact Liam O’Reilly and the team at  Wagners to understand your legal rights


At Wagners, we firmly believe that no amount of compensation can eliminate the pain and suffering that your assailant caused, but there is so much good that comes from a successfully resolved  institutional or sexual abuse claim. As a survivor, the monetary compensation you receive can assist you to recover from the abuse and cater to the medical costs involved. Holding the assailant accountable also restores your dignity and encourages other victims of sexual and institutional abuse to come out and seek justice as well.

The amount of compensation you deserve for your sexual or institutional abuse claim will depend on many factors. Some of these factors include:

  • How the abuse affected your ability to support yourself and make sufficient income
  • The type of medical treatment you need or you have sought due to the abuse
  • The personal or unique circumstances of your lawsuit

We know that sexual or institutional abuse is a terrible experience, and many victims usually have a heavy burden that they are likely to carry for a long time. For this reason, we offer reliable legal assistance that you need to get the monetary burden off your shoulders. Our main goal is to build a strong strategy and successfully fight for your rights.


[i] https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/halifax-police-charges-in-relation-historic-sexual-assault-1.7028019 ; https://globalnews.ca/news/10091784/dartmouth-school-sexual-assault-charge/ ; https://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/more/n-s-teacher-charged-with-2021-sexual-assault-exploitation-1.6644904 ; https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/case-of-halifax-area-school-teacher-accused-of-voyeurism-in-court-1.6942771 ; https://www.halifax.ca/home/news/police-lay-voyeurism-charges ; https://www.halifax.ca/home/news/police-lay-charges-relation-historical-sexual-assault ; https://www.saltwire.com/atlantic-canada/news/provincial/dartmouth-teacher-awaiting-trial-for-voyeurism-now-charged-with-historic-sexual-assault-100911946/


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