Mom Says School Dithered After Sex Assault

     HARTFORD (CN) – A public school district failed to protect a girl from five boys who sexually assaulted her, and a sixth who photographed the attack and passed the pictures around at school, the girl’s mother says in Federal Court.
     Jane Doe sued the Madison Board of Education on behalf of her daughter, Mary Doe, “for knowingly failing and refusing to protect the plaintiff from the continued contact with and harassment by the male students who sexually assaulted her, photographed her[,] and their friends who also taunted and harassed plaintiff after the assault.”
     The mother says her daughter, 15, was an 8th grader at Polson Middle School and a freshman at Daniel Hand High School during the incidents involved in the complaint.
     She says her daughter was sexually assaulted at a private home on Dec. 31, 2009, “by five male students who all attended Polson Middle School at the time.”
     “A sixth male student at Polson Middle School took one or more compromising photographs of Mary Doe (hereinafter, ‘the photographer’) during the assault and showed the photographs to other students at Polson Middle School during school hours,” the mom says.
     She says the Madison Board of Education “became aware of the assault on or about January 11, 2010, and was aware of the related harassment by the assailants, the photographer and their friend from that date forward,” but “allowed the assailants to remain in school for over a month until they were all arrested.”
     She adds: “The assailants eventually pled guilty for their crimes in the Connecticut Superior Court for Juvenile matters.”
     She says the Madison Board of Education let the photographer remain in school, with only a one-week suspension. She says the school board “took no disciplinary action whatsoever against the assailants and allowed them to remain in school, participate in sports and ski bus and other activities until they voluntarily withdrew approximately eight weeks after the assault and after they were arrested.”
     She says the school board let one of the assailants register for Daniel Hand High School in the fall of 2010, attend classes and participate in athletic events for at least three weeks until he voluntarily withdrew in response to repeated demands by the plaintiff.
     The mother says the school board failed to protect her daughter from her assailants, so she had to find another school for her outside the town of Madison.
     She seeks damages for Title IX violations, and the cost of her daughter’s alternate education program.The Does are represented by William Wilson II with Halloran and Sage.

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