Mason School District Faces Lawsuit Over Reinstating Student Expelled for Sexual Assault, Causing Distress for Victim

MASON, Michigan – A federal lawsuit has been filed against the Mason school district, accusing them of causing “significant distress” to a female student who was sexually assaulted by a male student. According to the complaint, the district’s decision to reinstate the male student has harmed the girl’s educational opportunities and forces her to be in the same school building as her assailant.

The incident occurred in May 2022 during a class, prompting the girl to report the assault and trigger criminal and Title IX investigations. The Title IX investigation revealed that the boy violated the district’s policy prohibiting sexual assault by putting his hand inside the girl’s pants and not stopping when she tried to push him away. The lawsuit states that the boy only ceased his actions when the class ended but attempted to assault her again in a different class a few days later, a claim supported by other students interviewed during the investigation.

Mason Police conducted an investigation in May 2022 but did not press charges against the male student who assaulted the girl. The lawsuit reveals that the girl obtained a personal protection order against the boy in the summer of 2022, with an Ingham County judge recently ruling that the order should remain in place.

Following the Title IX investigation, the Mason schools Board of Education expelled the male student. However, the lawsuit alleges that the boy’s parents successfully petitioned for his reinstatement, and he was subsequently enrolled in the same school as the girl in the fall.

The lawsuit names the district, the Mason High School Principal, the Assistant Principal, and the boy’s parents as defendants. Both the Superintendent and the district’s attorney declined to comment on the matter. Mason Police Chief also refrained from making any statements due to the involvement of juveniles and a local school.

According to the complaint, the girl has repeatedly reported seeing the boy in hallways, during lunch, and after-school activities, which violates the personal protection order in place.

The article does not identify the girl or the boy involved due to their status as a minor and the lack of criminal charges against the boy. The lawsuit argues that the district failed to prioritize the girl’s requests and concerns for her safety when allowing the male student to return to school.

Title IX policies of the Mason Public Schools Board of Education state that people who have experienced sexual harassment should receive ongoing remedies to restore or preserve access to education programs and activities. The Holt-based Firecracker Foundation, an advocacy group for child sexual assault survivors, recommends possible accommodations such as counseling, changes to schedules or assignments, and increased supervision or security at locations where violence has occurred in the past.

The lawsuit aims to bring justice for the girl and highlight the alleged indifference of the district towards her wellbeing and education.