School board to decide fate of Leesburg High band director accused of leading ‘cult-like’ group

LEESBURG, Fla. — The school board in Lake County will decide the fate of the band director at Leesburg High School.


Gabriel Fielder put in his resignation after a former student accused him of leading a “cult-like” group.

Fielder is requesting a chance to resign in lieu of termination. The school board will decide whether to accept the request.

It comes after a report made to Leesburg police by a former student claimed Fielder was a member of a secret society at the high school called the Elder Council.

READ: Leesburg band director, counselor accused of operating ‘cult-like’ secret society within school

State records show Fielder and a guidance counselor named Leonardo Finelli started a nonprofit in 2019.

It had the same name as the alleged secret society, The Elder Council Inc.

READ: State records shed light on ‘cult-like’ secret society operating at Leesburg High School

The student claims that when he was 17 and in the secret society, Finelli sent him sexually explicit messages and asked to meet up with him.

Finelli already resigned instead of being fired.

Finelli and Fielder have not been charged with a crime.

READ: Dean accused of sexually battering child after late-night workout at Marion County middle school

The school board is set to meet at 6 p.m. We will keep you updated with what happens.

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