The details of a legal claim filed this week against the San Diego Unified School District are difficult to hear.
An elementary school girl, unable to physically cry out for help, was allegedly fondled by a group of three fellow students inside a school bathroom last May.
The child’s mother, whom we will refer to only as LaToya to protect her daughter’s identity, has filed a claim against the district because she said Principal Bruce Ferguson failed to follow up on promises that students would be better supervised.
The alleged incident occurred on May 19 at Byron M. Green Elementary.
LaToya said she learned of the attack from her daughter when they got home.
The seven-year-old girl told her mom that while she was “using the potty,” she was surrounded and molested.
“There were three of them her pants were still down and all three of them fondled her and I asked, ‘What did you do?’and she said,’ I just stood there and cried,’” LaToya told NBC 7 Tuesday.
The first grader couldn’t scream. According to her mother, the girl is a special-needs student who has vocal cord paralysis and uses a feeding tube.
LaToya reported the incident to the principal, her daughter told her that night.
“He looked at my daughter and said, ‘I will take care of it. I apologize for what happened to you and I will take care of it,’” the mother recalled.
A year later she said the school and the district has made false assurances that they were going to take care of the problem.
NBC 7 contacted San Diego Unified School District officials for a response Monday and a spokeswoman sent the following statement:
“We have received the claim and will be reviewing it thoroughly. While we cannot comment on specifics in a pending claim, we are investigating fully to ensure relevant procedures were followed and recommend improvements if needed.”
Attorney Anna Yum claims that in March of this year there was a similar incident where a different girl climbed under a stall.
This time, according to the claim filed against the district, another student crawled underneath a bathroom stall and stared at LaToya's daughter while her daughter was using the toilet.
“It doesn’t get much worse than that in terms of her privacy , in terms of her fear her embarrassment and all my client's mother wants to do is for her daughter to go to school without feeling fear that another student is going to assault or molest her,” Yum said.
LaToya said she is worried about the students who allegedly molested her daughter as well.