East Side Union School District student alleges district failed to prevent bullying, abuse from other students

By Charmaine Little | May 25, 2018

SAN JOSE – A Piedmont Hills High School student and her parents filed a legal complaint against a classmate, a teacher, the school district and its principal after the student alleged she suffered bullying and sexual abuse on and off school grounds.

SAN JOSE – A Piedmont Hills High School student and her parents filed a legal complaint against a classmate, a teacher, the school district and its principal after the student alleged she suffered bullying and sexual abuse on and off school grounds.

Student Haley Yates and her parents Gina Yates and Mark Yates filed a suit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in the San Jose Division on May 18 against East Side Union School District, Traci Williams, Archie J. Kregear, Toure Oliver and Does 1-20 over allegations of gender discrimination, discrimination in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, battery and other counts.

According to the suit, Haley Yates, who was noted to have qualified for special education service, was a student at Piedmont Hills High School and alleged she suffered sexual, verbal and physical abuse by the hand of another student and now ex-boyfriend, Oliver, that left bruises and emotional distress.

The suit states that Oliver was later arrested and pleaded guilty.

The suit also states Haley Yates was subjected to ongoing bullying by three male students.

The plaintiffs also allege that the school district was aware of the abuse, which included Oliver allegedly leaking nude photos of Haley, but "did nothing to prevent it."

"Defendant East Side Union School District had many opportunity to remedy the ongoing sexual, physical, verbal, and psychological abuse but chose not to remedy the violation," the suit states. 

The plaintiffs allege the defendants violated California Civil Code 52.1 as they allegedly, “conspired, supported, encouraged, facilitated, acquiesced defendant Oliver’s violence, threats, intimidation, and coercion against” Haley, according to the suit.

The plaintiffs request the court grant them general and noneconomic damages according to proof, special and economic damages, treble damages, and for the defendants to pay their legal fees and costs. They are represented by Teresa Li of the Law Offices of Teresa Li in Pleasanton.

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