Va. School Officials Sued in Bullied Student’s Death

YORKTOWN, Va.—The mother of a Grafton High School student who committed suicide is suing York County school and law enforcement officials for $10 million in a wrongful death civil lawsuit.

Alise Williams’ son, Christian Taylor, hanged himself May 31 in his home as a result of alleged bullying. The high school freshman was bullied repeatedly at school after the family moved to the area in December, according to the

The lawsuit, filed July 30, names Grafton High principal Paul Hopkins, assistant principals Craig Reed and Fahringer, counselor Joseph Erfe and school security officer Deputy Ralph Hood of the York-Poquoson Sheriff’s Office as defendants.

The accused bully was not named in the suit; however, court papers describe the individual as aggressive and is said to have consistently harassed and verbally abused other students. Williams claims the defendants became aware of the bully’s behavior during the first week of May. Additionally, the plaintiff says that despite having meetings with all five defendants on May 11 and May 13, the behavior continued, according to court documents.

Furthermore, the suit states that school officials should have enforced the anti-bullying policies mandated by the Virginia Department of Education and the York County School Board and that the defendants should have been aware of the emotional and suicide risks by such bullying.

Read the full article.


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