Redlands Unified School District has agreed to an $11 M Settlement for complaints filed by seven victims and alleged victims against a former middle school teacher serving a 74-year prison sentence for sexual abuse.
According to reports from Thursday, the Redlands Unified School District ended litigation, including four separate lawsuits involving Sean Ramiro Lopez, an English teacher at Clement Middle School.
Under this administration’s leadership, Redlands Unified has implemented strict rules, practices, and reporting protocols to prevent future incidents of this kind, according to a statement released by the Redlands Unified Spokesman on Thursday.
Lopez, aged 48, was sentenced to 74 years in jail in January 2006 for assaulting three students between late 1999 to 2001. Lopez waived his right to a jury trial, and a judge found him guilty of 60 counts of felony, including indecent and lascivious actions on a minor under the age of 14.
Warning Signs of Sexual Abuse
Everyone should be able to recognize the warning signs of sexual abuse to assist relatives and friends. While sexual abuse isn’t always understandable, there are certain common red flags to look for:
- Bleeding, bruising, or edema in the genital area.
- Hygiene changes, such as refusing to bathe or bathing too frequently
- Having depression or post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms
- Having unexpected difficulties at school
- Self-harming behaviour.
Child Sexual Abuse Statute of Limitations in California
Survivors of childhood sexual abuse in California had to file a lawsuit by the age of 26 or, if they were already an adult, within three years of discovering their psychological injury caused by childhood sexual abuse (whichever came later).
Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 218 into law in October 2019, changing the state’s statute of limitations. This law provided survivors additional time to file civil childhood sexual abuse claims by extending the state’s statute of limitations.
The Statute of limitations that govern childhood sexual abuse claims in California includes:
- Survivors of childhood sexual abuse must claim a lawsuit by the age of 40 or within five years of learning of the assault as an adult.
- Survivors of childhood sexual abuse now have a three-year window to file sexual abuse claims that have previously passed the statute of limitations from January 2020.
- When sexual abuse occurs in the context of an attempted or successful cover-up, courts have the authority to increase the damages given.
This amendment in the law has helped to address a common issue in situations of childhood sexual abuse. Because the victims are minors, they require sufficient time to realise they have been abused and take appropriate action.
In addition, children often experience memory loss due to sexual violence, and it might take decades for them to remember or understand the trauma.
How Victims of Childhood Sexual Abuse Can Seek Justice
It is undoubtedly challenging to sort through the pain and muster the courage to come forward after being sexually abused as a child.
Fortunately, the California statute of limitations for child sexual abuse has been extended, giving survivors additional time to file a claim.
Our child abuse lawyers at Khashan Law are ready to stand by your side and guide you through a sexual abuse lawsuit.
We understand how difficult it was to sort through your trauma; we are here to help you with the rest of the process.