MIAMI (CN) – A mother claims in court that Miami Senior High School responded to her plea to protect her daughter from a stalker with a “shoulder shrug,” allowed him to abduct her “without any opposition from school security,” then shot himself in front of the terrified girl.
Victoria Gabuardi and her daughter sued the Miami Dade County School Board in Miami-Dade County Court.
Gabuardi claims her daughter was being harassed by a man named Raul Enrique Vargas in 2008.
“Raul Enrique Vargas continued his unsolicited and threatening conduct against (her daughter), thereby inciting dismay and alarm from her,” the complaint states.
“Mr. Vargas had several times traversed school property at the Miami Senior High to accost and pester (the girl) without any protective action being undertaken by the security/staff on behalf of defendant.
“The concern and consternation aroused by the dangerous conduct of Mr. Vargas prompted the plaintiff Victoria Gabuardi, mother of (the girl) to go to the high school several times before June 4, 2008 to alert them to the danger posed by Mr. Vargas.
“The mother implored the school staff to take preventive measures to safeguard her daughter against the predations of Mr. Vargas. Her appeal fell on deaf ears. The only response of the school was a shoulder shrug. It was apparent that no one was coming to the rescue of (her daughter).
“Finally, and inevitably, on June 4, 2008 Mr. Vargas would transgress school property one last time without any opposition from school security, located in the hallway, and proceeded to abduct (the girl) in broad daylight and march her outside to the street, herd her into his car, and drove off. (She) was terrorized. The man shouted threats of violence against (her). Finally he stopped his car and pulled out a rifle and shot himself.
“To the present day (the plaintiff’s daughter) lives with the horror of what happened to her on June 4, 2008.
“By the defendants’ own policy and by state law the school board has an obligation to exercise supervision and provide security to plaintiff when she is a student on school property.
“Preserving the safety and protecting the health and general welfare of students such as (the daughter) Jennifer are the legal and moral responsibility of the school board.
“A part of that duty is to protect students from any risk of harm particularly when the harm is reasonably foreseeable. …
“The school board breached its duty of care owed to plaintiff when it failed to provide adequate security and supervision for plaintiff after being notified of a potential threat by the mother,” the complaint states.
The mother and daughter seek damages for physical injuries, pain and suffering, mental anguish, severe emotional distress, and attorney’s fees.
They are represented by Angela Dawson, of Lauderhill.