(Daily Caller News Foundation) – A former female student, who was sexually assaulted by a male student claiming to be transgender, filed a lawsuit Wednesday against Loudoun County Public Schools (LCPS) for allegedly covering up the attack, according to court documents.
The assault was first reported in 2021 by the Daily Wire after the student’s father, Scott Smith, was arrested for disorderly conduct at a board meeting after he demanded that the board admit they covered up his daughter’s attack. Now the student and her parents, identified in the lawsuit as Jane Doe, Jane Roe and John Doe respectively, are suing the district for $30 million for its “indifference to sexual assault” and failure to protect Jane Doe from harm, according to court documents.
“As a result of LCPS’ failure to take meaningful and appropriate action to address her sexual assault and protect her from further threats and assault, Jane Doe struggled academically, emotionally and physically for the remainder of the school year,” the lawsuit reads. “She continues to struggle significantly with the aftermath of the sexual assault and the school’s failure to take appropriate action to help her and protect her while she still was attending Loudoun County Public Schools.”
The complaint alleges that on May 28, 2021, the female student’s mother was called by the school, who told her that her child had been “beaten up,” but was not informed of the sexual assault. After her daughter told her she had been sexually assaulted while in the school bathroom by a male student wearing a skirt, Cynthia McCarthy, the school counselor, reportedly refused to admit the assault had taken place.
The school issued an announcement the following day, noting that the sheriff’s department had shown up but that there was “no threat to the student body,” according to the lawsuit.
LCPS continued to deny the assault happened, saying in June 2021 that they had no “records of assaults occurring in our restrooms,” according to the lawsuit. In October 2021, the district board claimed that it was unaware of the details of the sexual assault until it had been reported in the media.
That same month, the male student was convicted of sexual assault but the board and the district superintendent, Scott Ziegler, said in a letter to the Sheriff’s department that they could not “confirm” that the male student had even been charged, according to the lawsuit. Ziegler was later fired from his position as superintendent and was found guilty by a jury in September for firing a teacher who had testified that a different student kept trying to inappropriately touch her.
“It’s been a long, hard-fought battle, and we’re finally glad to be able to put this lawsuit forward and set a precedent that this should never happen to any child anywhere across the nation,” Smith, who was pardoned by Republican Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, told The Washington Post.
LCPS did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.