Sexual Abuse at Palm Springs Unified School District
Unfortunately, vulnerable young children are not safe from sexual abuse and misconduct while attending a school in Palm Springs, California. Palm Springs Unified School District (PSUSD) has faced lawsuits from survivors of child sexual abuse in the past. If you believe you have grounds to bring a claim against PSUSD for sex crimes committed against you or your child, don’t hesitate to contact Manly, Stewart & Finaldi to get started with a free and confidential case evaluation.
What Is School Sexual Abuse?
School sexual abuse or violence can refer to many different types of sex crimes committed against victims on school grounds. The most common scenario is an adult at the school, such as a teacher or counselor, using his or her position of trust and authority to take advantage of students. Child sexual abuse can refer to unwanted or nonconsensual sexual acts against a victim. It also includes sexual activity involving mutual consent, since a minor under the age of 18 cannot give his or her consent in California.
Common examples of sexual assault and abuse at a school in Palm Springs include:
- Unwelcome flirting, sexual propositions or leering
- Sexualized slurs, comments, remarks or innuendos
- Sexual or graphic jokes or stories
- Spreading sexual rumors
- Bullying, cyberbullying or hazing involving sexual assault
- Inappropriate touching, kissing, fondling, hugging or massaging
- Touching the intimate parts of a child
- Intentionally blocking or cornering a student
- Exposing the student to sexually suggestive or explicit materials
- Sexual coercion, assault or battery
- Rape, statutory rape or sodomy
If you or your child experienced any form of sexual misconduct while at a school in the Palm Springs Unified School District, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Filing a civil lawsuit can enable you to seek justice against your perpetrator as well as the school district as a whole for concealing or contributing to the abuse.
Who Are the Perpetrators of Sexual Abuse at a School?
School sexual abuse and assault can be committed by anyone who has access to young children on school grounds or during after-school activities. This can include adults as well as fellow students. Some of the most common culprits are:
- Band directors
- Cafeteria workers
- Support staff
- Bus drivers
- Other students
PSUSD is not new to child sexual abuse claims. A recent example is a lawsuit brought against the school district for a bus driver, Jose Luis Moncada, who committed lewd acts against children under the age of 14 years old. Moncada drove buses for PSUSD from 2005 to 2020, after being fired from a position at Laidlaw Transit, Inc. in 2004 for sexual abuse allegations.
When Can You Sue a School District for Child Sexual Abuse?
School districts in California can be held legally and financially responsible (liable) for the sexual abuse of students at any of their schools. School districts are often held vicariously liable for the negligent and criminal actions of their staff members, including teachers and others who break the law and commit sex crimes against students. Note, however, that these institutions have certain protections under state law.
To sue PSUSD for child sex abuse, you must follow the requirements of the California Tort Claims Act. This law covers bringing lawsuits against government entities. Under it, you must first send in a notice of your intent to sue the school district. This notice may have a shorter deadline than the typical sexual abuse claim, so act quickly. Once your notice has been filed, the school district will have the chance to accept or reject your claim. From there, your lawyer can either negotiate a settlement or take your case to trial.
Contact Manly, Stewart & Finaldi for a Free Sexual Abuse Case Review in Palm Springs
Manly, Stewart & Finaldi is a premier school sexual abuse law firm with lawyers who can demand justice and accountability for this heinous crime on your behalf. We can go up against the Palm Springs Unified School District and anyone else who played a role in the sexual abuse or assault of a student. Call us at (800) 700-8450 or contact us online today to learn more during a free case review.