Thursday, October 22, 2015

San Ramon High School Accused of Failing to Report Sexual Abuse by Coach

A high school is facing a sexual abuse lawsuit on behalf of victims who allege that a former wrestling coach and teacher sexually assaulted them.  They are further alleging that high school administrators were informed about other instances of sexual misconduct on the part of this same teacher and failed to investigate or take any action for almost 10 months.

This is allegedly a copy of the note taken by a school employee regarding the allegations, which were never investigated:

This case raises a common problem among schools in California, namely, attempting to conduct their own investigation rather than reporting the allegations to police and allowing law enforcement to investigate.   As stated by Robert Allard, the attorney for one of the alleged victims in this case:

"This is the classic example of why school administrators should not conduct investigations into sex abusers,"  "They should have let police handle it once reasonable suspicion was formed."

By law, any public school in the State of California is required to report any allegation of sexual abuse or misconduct to child protective services and/or law enforcement under certain circumstances.
Under California Penal Code sections 11164-11174.3, "mandated reporters" (which include teachers and school administrators) are required to report any reasonable suspicions that sexual abuse or neglect has taken place.