LA School District Pays $23M to Sexually Molested 5th Grader
A boy who was molested as a fifth grader by his teacher won a $23 million verdict against the Los Angeles school district and the teacher.
The victim was a 10-year-old student at Queen Anne Elementary School when his teacher, Forrest Stobbe, molested him. He was caught and arrested after molesting the young student from October 2008 to July 2009. Stobbe was charged with rape and oral copulation on a minor and pled no contest to two counts of a lewd act on a child and to continuous sexual abuse of a child younger than 14. Before that, Stobbe had been caught, alone in his car with a student after school, improperly touching a student, and having private lunches with the victim.
His family sued the school district and Stobbe arguing that the school administration was aware of the incidents but didn’t take appropriate steps to discipline Stobbe.
According to Bomberger, the Los Angeles Unified School District blamed the victim for not coming forward sooner, called him a liar and claimed that he was not molested on the school campus.
But at trial, the lead detective and the defense expert testified the abuse took place on campus and the victim’s DNA was found in a jar of Vaseline in Stobbe’s desk.
The jury ordered Stobbe to pay $16.1 million and the school district to pay $6.9 million for failing to supervise him.
“We are extremely pleased with the verdict and the jury’s obvious call for teachers and school districts to be held accountable for their actions,” said Bomberger.