Berlin Man Sentenced in Sex Abuse of Teenage Piano Student - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Berlin Man Sentenced in Sex Abuse Case of Teenage Piano Student

Posted: Apr 06, 2018 4:15 PM Updated:

WASHINGTON -- The United States Attorney's Office said Friday that a Berlin man was sentenced to 20 years in prison after he was found guilty of sexually abusing his former teenage piano student. 

According to the Attorney's Office, Mark Chuvala, 41, of Berlin, Md., was found guilty on January 30, 2018, on three counts of second degree child sexual abuse, and other charges, following several years of incidents starting seven years ago.

The first incident happened in 2011, when Chuvala was 34 and his student was 13 years old. He was her teacher at the Middle C Music in the Tenleytown neighborhood of Northwest Washington. After their lessons finished, Chuvala kept in contact with the student via text messages and the two met up a few days later in a park in Montgomery County, where the first sexual encounter took place. Government evidence also found that Chuvala and the victim met on at least two more occasions after they met at the park -- these incidents happened in the middle of the night in Washington D.C. The Attorney's Office said during these encounters, they each engaged in sexual acts. When Chuvala moved from D.C., he continued to talk to her via text messages all day,  every day, and continued their sexual encounters via the video-chatting site, Skype. 

The victim first told a friend about the abuse in the spring of 2012, who told a school counselor, who then told police. However, the Attorney's Office said the victim was not ready to disclose the name of her abuser when police opened an investigation and persuaded her parents not to disclose that information to police either. The victim came forward in the fall of 2014 and Chuvala was arrested on June 24, 2015.

After Chuvala's prison term, the Attorney's Office said he'll also be placed on 10 years of supervised release and will be required to register as a sex offender for 10 years.  

Chuvala also pleaded guilty to three counts of third degree sex offences for the incident in the Montgomery County park and is awaiting sentencing in that county on April 9. 

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