A lawsuit filed on behalf of a former student at The Bishop’s School in La Jolla alleges that a female teacher molested and harassed him over a two-year period in the 1990s, beginning when he was 16 years old.
The alleged abuse included fondling, oral sex and intercourse. According to the suit, the acts took place in several locations throughout San Diego, including the grounds of the private school, the teacher’s home, and a park.
The suit describes the computer science teacher as a married mother with children who was then in her early 30s. The complaint alleges she sometimes brought John H. Doe, now 41, into the computer lab and molested him with the door locked and windows covered.
The alleged acts continued after the student turned 18 and was no longer enrolled at the college preparatory school, according to the court papers.
A statement issued by plaintiff’s attorney Vince Finaldi said he targeted the school, the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego and the teacher in the suit. He filed it in San Diego Superior Court.
Representatives from the school and the diocese could not immediately be reached for comment.
According to the suit, Doe only realized last year due to therapy that lingering “psychological injuries or illnesses” he suffered were the result of the alleged abuse.
The suit alleges that on multiple occasions, other staff, including the school’s headmistress, saw the plaintiff and his computer science teacher leaving the lab together. The plaintiff recalled the headmistress asked questions, including “How are you really”
He interpreted her queries as suggesting she had knowledge about what was happening.
The court filing states that the teacher was fired in 2018, but did not specify the cause.
Allegations against former Bishop’s School teachers have made headlines over the years, though the bulk of the allegations related to abuse that allegedly occurred in the 1970s and ’80s.
A letter issued to alumni last year stated that seven graduates had come forward regarding alleged sexual abuse at the campus.
It described 15 separate incidents, according to a July 2018 La Jolla Light article.
Finaldi said, “This scandal-plagued school had every reason to be on guard given the long history of criminal sexual activity on their campus. Instead, they ignored all the warning signs and allowed a teacher to sexually molest, harass and threaten our client for two years.”
Doe said in a statement, “I have chosen to keep my name private as is the right of every victim of child sexual assault in California. My message to other victims of abuse at the Bishop’s School is – contact law enforcement. Hold your abuser accountable. Protect other children. Your privacy will be respected, and you will be believed.”
– City News Service