The family of a 5-year-old Castaic girl is seeking more than $1 million from Castaic Union School District, alleging the kindergartner was sexually assaulted by another student at North Lake Elementary School during a series of escalating incidents in 2021 and that school officials ignored the problem.
An attorney for the family filed a sworn statement on behalf of the girl, claiming the district’s lack of response to the alleged assaults — which reportedly took place while students were unsupervised in the restroom — caused the girl to become so scared to use the bathroom she developed a kidney infection.
District officials did not respond to a request for comment via email Friday regarding questions about the claims in the complaint and could not be reached by phone late Friday afternoon.
“Seeing the traumatic effects of multiple assaults on this child is heartbreaking,” according to Sam Dordulian of the Dordulian Law Group, who represents the plaintiff. And the level of negligence on the part of school officials was unconscionable. Despite being alerted to the fact that a student was being sexually assaulted, a combination of inaction, ineptitude, and indifference allowed her to be repeatedly victimized. It’s a nightmare for any parent, and it should have been prevented.”
A sworn declaration filed by the family’s attorney states the young girl complained to her grandmother that during the first week of the school year, in August 2021, a student forcefully kissed her on the mouth. The complaint alleges the child’s grandparent “reported the incident to petitioner’s teacher, who advised that they would take measures,” according to court documents obtained by The Signal.
“The following day the perpetrator kissed petitioner again. This incident was reported to the teacher and yet nothing was done,” according to the complaint. “On or about Sept. 22, 2021, the perpetrator’s behavior escalated when a classmate of petitioner saw the perpetrator pinning petitioner down on the bathroom floor and orally copulating her,” according to the complaint.
The September allegation resulted in the classmate’s parents informing school officials, who then discussed the incident with the child’s legal guardian.
“It was later discovered that this incident had occurred on multiple occasions,” the complaint alleges. “The bathroom where the incidents occurred was inside a kindergarten classroom while no adult was in the room to supervise.”
Statements associated with the complaint allege that “the sexual harassment and molestation endured by claimant has caused numerous injuries, including stress, anxiety, mistrust of others and physical manifestations of pain and suffering.”
The claim notes the girl’s guardian was unaware of the legal remedies available until she contacted counsel, which is why the “Application for Leave to Present Late Claim” is now being filed on her behalf.
The case has a hearing date scheduled regarding the application for 8:30 a.m. May 25 in Department F47 of the Chatsworth Courthouse.