ONLY ON CBS7: Family files lawsuit against Greenwood ISD, alleging mishandling of sexual harassment and assault against student

Greenwood ISD is facing a lawsuit from a student's family.
Greenwood ISD is facing a lawsuit from a student's family.(Joshua Skinner / KOSA)
Published: Oct. 25, 2021 at 5:38 PM CDT
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MIDLAND, Texas (KOSA) - CBS7 has learned of a lawsuit filed by the family of a Greenwood ISD student against the school district. The family says the school district did not adequately investigate their child’s sexual harassment and assault claims.

The school district has denied these claims.

In court documents, both the school district and the family acknowledge a 14-year-old 8th-grade student at James R. Brooks Middle School was repeatedly sexually harassed and assaulted during the 2018-19 school year. The family says these incidences happened between November and January of that school year.

This is where things become less clear.

The family’s lawsuit alleges school employees asked the student and other witnesses not to speak about what went on, and that the school district only contacted the Midland County Sheriff’s Office once the family threatened to do it themselves.

The lawsuit also claims the school district did not follow Title IX guidelines to investigate incidences of harassment and assault.

The lawsuit also says the school district cut off purchasing items from a company partially owned by the victim’s father. The lawsuit says that move was in retaliation to a “letter of representation outlining violations by the school district.”

CBS7 reached out to Greenwood ISD and the family, who released statements through their lawyers.

Greenwood ISD: “The police utilized our information for their actions. There are situations that occur that are bullying, hazing, harassment, etc. The district did what was required. At the time, the law had the same investigation requirements for all three.”

Victim’s family: “The family has done everything they could not to make this matter public in order to protect everyone involved. Unfortunately, and without the family’s knowledge, information about the lawsuit was leaked last week. The family looks forward to trying this case in court.”

Both sides say there is a motion to dismiss currently pending in court. When a decision on that motion could be handed down is not presently known.

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