Families Reach Settlement in 2014 Marysville School Shooting Lawsuit

The shooter sent a text to five students asking them to meet him for lunch before opening firing, killing four and seriously injuring one.

Families Reach Settlement in 2014 Marysville School Shooting Lawsuit

The student used his father's illegally purchased gun in the shooting.

The families of five Marysville-Pilchuck High School students who were shot in the school’s cafeteria in 2014 have reached a settlement with the school district’s insurance company for $18 million.

The settlement comes from a lawsuit alleging that Rosemary Cooper, a substitute teacher at the Washington school, was informed of the possibility of a school shooting but did not alert school officials, according to ABC News.

Originally listed in the settlement were Cooper, the school district’s insurance company, and the school district itself. The school district was eventually dropped as a defendant after the School Board decided to insure Cooper as a school employee.

The families’ attorney, Lincoln Beauregard, says his plaintiffs were asking for $20 million, the cap of the Marysville School District’s insurance policy.

“The plaintiffs elected not to pursue amounts that would erode the school district’s general budget that is designated for educating and protecting students,” Beauregard wrote in a settlement agreement.

On October 24, 2014, 15-year-old Jaylen Fryberg texted five of his classmates and asked them to meet him for lunch. He then opened fire on them in the school cafeteria using his father’s illegally purchased gun.

Four of the students were shot and killed and the fifth was shot in the face but survived. Fryberg then turned the gun on himself.

The shooter’s father, Raymond Lee Fryberg, had been barred from possessing firearms after being issued a protective order following an alleged assault of his partner. He was found guilty in September 2015 on the charge of illegal possession of a firearm.

Cooper claims that she did inform the front office after a student told her that there was going to be a shooting. She later withdrew part of her claim, stating she was pressured to do so.

Cooper also claims she left a note for the teacher she was substituting for. The teacher says he did not receive any note.

Court documents from two therapists Cooper saw in July 2016 stated that she “was suffering from extreme guilt for never having passed along the student warning”.

Following the settlement, KIRO reports that some parents voiced their concerns about the school’s handling of the shooting.

“Even when they were on lockdown, they were able to go from one classroom to another,” says Meka Jackson, whose daughter currently attends Marysville-Pilchuck. “There’s no security at that school. And then I have a child who’s about to go to that school next year.”

“I’m trying to move out of the area,” she continued. “I’m done.”

 

 

 

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About the Author

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Amy is Campus Safety’s Executive Editor. Prior to joining the editorial team in 2017, she worked in both events and digital marketing.

Amy has many close relatives and friends who are teachers, motivating her to learn and share as much as she can about campus security. She has a minor in education and has worked with children in several capacities, further deepening her passion for keeping students safe.

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