Abuse and Sexual Assault
Note: Case resolved in the Fall of 2015.
A sexual abuse civil lawsuit has been filed by the sexual abuse law firm of Cerri, Boskovich & Allard against the Jefferson School District and former Principal Susan Moffitt for their roles in allowing former Anthony Traina Elementary School teacher Darrel Golden to sexually abuse a 9-year-old student. The lawsuit states that the student, known as John Doe, is one of at least twelve children known to have been molested by Golden.
The lawsuit alleges that, between August of 2011 and May of 2012, Golden repeatedly performed lewd acts on the then 9-year-old student. The lawsuit also alleges that although Principal Susan Moffitt was previously aware of Golden's inappropriate physical contact with students, she nevertheless afforded Golden unfettered and unsupervised access to children.
The complaint states that, as a mandated reporter, Moffitt broke the law by failing to report Golden to police during the 2006-2007 school year after she learned that Golden had been accused of touching the private parts of a young female student. As opposed to calling the police, as required, Moffitt allegedly responded to the sexual abuse complaints by merely removing the child from Golden's classroom and issuing a verbal warning.
The complaint also states that, three years later in 2010, Principal Moffitt broke the law by failing to report a parent's complaint that Golden inappropriately touched their young daughter.
One year later, in 2011, Moffitt issued a written warning to Golden, advising him to refrain from “inappropriate” physical contact with students. In the letter, Moffitt alluded to the incidents in 2006 and 2010, as well as a verbal warning that her vice principal issued the year before about massaging and/or putting his hands on a male students’ shoulders.
"Unfortunately, this case is part of a disturbing trend where school administrators go out of their way to protect their teachers at the expense of child safety,” said John Doe's attorney, Robert Allard. “Both Moffitt and the school district unconscionably permitted minor children to be placed in an unsafe and dangerous environment with a known pedophile."
John Doe’s mother discovered the horrifying truth in August of 2013 after she learned that Golden had been indicted by a Grand Jury and charged with felony child molestation. When the mother questioned her son, the child broke down, began crying, and disclosed the sexual abuse.
"As parents, we rightfully expect that our children will be protected from predators like Golden our schools. What happened here is an extreme betrayal of that trust, and as a result, the lives of several children are irreparably damaged,” said Allard.
Golden is serving 14 years in jail after pleading guilty to four counts of child molestation and sexual abuse. Golden was a former second and fourth grade teacher at Traina Elementary School in Tracy, California. He was charged with more than 30 counts of lewd conduct toward former students, dating back to 2006. Acts included touching, fondling, grabbing, massaging, and calling some of his female students his “wives.”About Cerri, Boskovich & Allard
The sexual abuse attorneys at Cerri, Boskovich & Allard have a national reputation and a proven record of helping victims and their families recover from childhood sexual abuse.
We have seen firsthand the pain experienced by victims and the lifelong impact that sexual abuse has on survivors. We understand the love that parents have for their children and their desire for justice when children have been violated. The actions we take on behalf of our child molestation victims and their families help make our community safer. In addition to recovering maximum compensation for our clients, we force schools, daycare centers, sporting organizations, churches and all organizations which interact with children to change their negligent ways.