Mother Files Bullying Lawsuit

Fed up with her daughter being bullied, a local mother has filed a lawsuit against the school and the parents of students accused of cyber-bullying.

WGNO News Reporter Darian Trotter has details about the case, and reaction from the frustrated parent.

“I just feel like children as a whole deserve to be protected by the administration of their school.”

But Jeanine Holmes says that was not the case for her 12-year old daughter at Holy Ghost Catholic School in Hammond.

A lawsuit filed Wednesday against the school and parents of two other students alleges the victim was continually, severely and traumatically bullied at the school; both in person and electronically.

The family’s attorney says school administrators are negligent.

“We believe that the school did not act properly, did not respond properly and was derelict in their duty in protecting this child,” attorney Felix J. Sternfels said.

The lawsuit alleges school administrators failed to discipline or counsel the offenders, who carried out their reign of terror during the better part of a year.

It took an emotional toll on the victim.

“She was in a very very bad state,” Holmes explained.

The victim had to be evaluated and hospitalized at Adolescent Behavioral Health.

“Extreme anxiety, depression, she after being evaluated through the hospital that she was admitted into was deemed suicidal,” Holmes elaborated.

The family is seeking relief for medical expenses, pain and suffering; as well expenses related to any future treatment.

“We just knew she’d be defended by the administration and when she wasn’t initially we couldn’t even believe it was happening that way,” Holmes said. “On good faith we kept waiting and allowing for them to act and they didn’t.”

Police officers investigating the case have already seized electronic devices from the students accused.

Wednesday night there was no response from Holy Ghost or the Diocese of Baton Rouge.

5 comments

  • shoobyboppitydoo

    i always wonder when i hear these bullying stories, how many time is it actually bullying vs. how many times is it just a kid who may be a little mean to a sensitive kid…not saying this case is or isn’t bullying, just curious

    • Sarah

      Kids rarely stop at being 'a little mean'. They do something ugly, and then they get rewarded for it by their peers when they get others to laugh or join in. Or they're just belligerent, for whatever reason. The article mentions at least two kids, and you can probably bet that they were feeding off one another.

  • Sarah

    I don't know why we expect the schools to deal with bullying. They can establish reasonable rules, and expect teachers to put a stop to bullying that they actually catch in progress, but beyond that, it's really out of their hands and it's unreasonable to expect schools to essentially parent children. All a lawsuit does — beyond cases of actual negligence, like a teacher standing and watching a kid get bullied — is take money out of our already bankrupting school systems. I completely agree with including the parents of the kids involved, though — this is really their responsibility, and if they can't teach their children right from wrong, they're just leaving it to society to do it for them.

  • Skeptic

    Yep, blame the schools. Right. Make the taxpayers pay for something a couple little punks allegedly did. Sounds like the "victim" and parent have some issues too, but they want to blame it all on the school so they can make some easy cash. What do people really expect the schools to do about bullying? Expel the other students for childhood bickering? You think the other parents wouldn't put up a fight and sue the school for failing their kid too? It's a lose-lose for the school. Bullying has been going on as long as humans have been on this earth. Difference now is we've become a society of victims with no coping skills and a thirst for easy lawsuit settlements.

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