L.A. School District Sued by Woman Who Says Bullying Left Son With Permanent Brain Damage

The suit against Green Dot Public Schools says staff failed to take proper protection measures.


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A Los Angeles area school district is being sued by a woman who says her son has permanent brain damage following a bullying incident that was caught on surveillance footage.

"The staff did everything wrong, every step of the way, and showed a callous disregard for my 12-year-old client's life and well being," attorney Ben Meiselas toldNBC News. "This is unacceptable and every adult working for this school should be haunted by their conduct for the rest of their lives."

The lawsuit is against Green Dot Public Schools, which oversees Animo Westside Charter Middle School, with the mother—who has chosen not to be publicly identified aside from "Sarah" in interviews—alleging that school officials were previously aware of violent actions by the 14-year-old perpetrator.

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"He is not the same anymore at all," the mother said of the aftermath of the January 2018 incident. "Every day it has been a daily struggle . . . We're hearing from other students while we're there, 'Oh, he was choked out.'" According to the mother, her 12-year-old son now has permanent brain and spinal injuries, as recently discovered by a doctor. Furthermore, it's alleged that school officials did not notify 911 services until approximately 30 minutes after the incident in question.

The larger picture, Meiselas said, is that schools and school districts "have the duty to protect" their students from such violence.

In footage of the incident, an alleged school staff member is seen walking by as the encounter plays out, yet does not intervene. The 12-year-old victim is later seen being carried into an office prior to medical officials' arrival on the scene. The boy, per the suit, suffered multiple seizures. The suit specifically alleges "negligent supervision and infliction of emotional distress."

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