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    Bay Shore Bus Driver Accused of Sexually Abusing Young Girl

    Bay Shore Bus Driver Accused of Sexually Abusing Young Girl sue liability lawyer attorney
    A Long Island school bus driver has been suspended without pay after he was accused of sexually abusing a young girl, who is now 13 years old. Miguel Enrique Diaz, a driver for Brook Elementary School and Bay Shore Middle School, allegedly abused the victim numerous times between May 2022 and October 2023.

    Police were notified of the abuse by a community therapist and placed Diaz under arrest on March 13, 2024. The suspect was charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child and one count of first degree sexual conduct against a child.

    A letter to the community was issued by the superintendent of Bay Shore School District stating that the incidents did not take place on school property or buses transporting students to and from district schools. Superintendent Steven Maloney also said that the driver’s employer, Suffolk Transportation, “will no longer participate in providing any driving duties for the District.”

    Suffolk Transportation released their own statement to say that Diaz “has been suspended without pay.” The company said that according to the police, the child was not abused in relation to his employment as a bus driver, implying that she was not a student of either Brook Elementary School or Bay Shore Middle School. However, that does not make the victim any less entitled to justice under the law. Nor does it eliminate the possibility that sexual misconduct occurred between Diaz and students at a school he worked for. If anything, it increases the possibility of victims who are left with the trauma of sexual abuse by a trusted adult.

    Were you sexually abused in a school van or school transportation vehicle? Were you sexually assaulted at another location by a public school / private school bus driver? If negligence by the school system is the reason you were abused, you may be interested in suing for monetary damages, like emotional distress and pain and suffering. Our attorneys are here to guide you every step of the way, so please schedule a free consultation by contacting our office.

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    Can I Sue if I was Sexually Assaulted by a School Bus Driver?

    Yes, you can sue for being sexually abused by a school bus driver or sue on behalf of your child if they were sexually assaulted or exploited. The key is to figure out who is liable, and the answer may involve multiple parties. Certainly, there is the driver who is guilty of sexual misconduct, but these individuals are employed by a school system, like a public school district or a board of trustees. These entities are responsible for hiring, training, and supervising their workers. They must also take immediate action to protect the students when they are notified of or suspect an inappropriate relationship, like sexual contact between a minor and adult.

    As we mentioned before, Suffolk Transportation insisted that Diaz’s crimes concerning the minor had “nothing to do with his employment as a school bus driver or at school district.” That may be the case, but it’s very likely that other kids were sexually abused by this man. How many others are out there, who are part of the Bay Shore School District? Was Diaz previously employed by a private or charter school, and if so, doesn’t it stand to reason that he may have victimized children at those locations as well?

    Of course, it’s possible that the school took reasonable measures to prevent such incidents by their employees. And when they found out what was going on, they immediately contacted the authorities and the child’s parents. Sadly, it’s more likely that the school failed in their duty of care to the student by ignoring their complaints, continuing to employ the bus driver, not calling the police, and other acts of negligence. In some districts, we have seen clear evidence of concealing / destroying evidence and allowing a culture of child sexual abuse to flourish for several decades.

    It’s important to note that in the case of Miguel Enrique Diaz, he was not employed directly by the school. Instead, Diaz worked for a private company called Suffolk Transportation, which had a contract with the district. So, this is another party that will likely be sued if the victim’s family decides to file a lawsuit. However, that doesn’t mean that the school is off the hook. After all, they may have been aware – or had reason to be aware – of suspicious conduct between the bus driver and the young girl.

    Ultimately, there are many elements to examine in order to figure out who is liable when a child is sexually assaulted by a school employee. Your case will have its own set of circumstances which we can discuss during a free, private consultation. Please take a moment to give us a call and talk to a California school bus driver sexual abuse lawyer.

    Average Settlement Values for a School Sexual Abuse Lawsuit

    A school bus driver sexual abuse claim may be worth between $400,000 and $1,000,000 for sexual exploitation, and $1,500,000 to $5,000,000 for sexual assault. If there are many incidents of assault that left the victim with severe emotional and/or physical damage, the amount of compensation may be closer to $10,000,000. There are many factors that play a role in case values of sexual abuse of a minor. These include, but are not limited to:

    • The age of the child in relation to the abuser
    • Whether the adult used their position of authority to coerce the child into a sexual act
    • What types of sexual acts occurred between the victim and perpetrator
    • The number of incidents and the duration of time in which they occurred
    • The number of defendants, i.e., entities that are liable for what happened to the child

    How Long do School Employee Sex Abuse Claims Take to Settle?

    Lawsuits for sexual abuse involving students and workers at a school generally take 1 or more years to settle. The most complicated lawsuits involve public schools and charter schools, which are public entities. Thus, there is a specific procedure that you must follow, which is established by the school district or the State of California. Due to these requirements, it’s not unusual for these lawsuits to take up to 2 years before a settlement is reached. Though it’s possible for these cases to be tried in court, this only happens in rare instances. The trial process will add at least another year to the amount of time it takes to settle a child sexual assault claim, but it’s important to note that more than 95% of sexual abuse cases are settled without the need for a trial.

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    Is there a Deadline to File a School Bus Driver Sexual Abuse Lawsuit?

    Yes, there is a deadline of 22 years, starting from when you are an adult, to file a child sexual abuse lawsuit. In California, the age of adulthood is 18, so that means your 40th birthday is the deadline for sexual abuse claims against public schools, private schools, and charter schools.

    The courts, however, do make an exception for those who do not realize the trauma (emotional or physical) of being sexually abused until they are over 40 years old. Referred to as the discovery rule, this is a complex, yet crucial legal concept that you can learn more about from one of our legal experts. To give you a basic idea, the repression of sexual abuse, whether you tell someone or not, is extremely common among children, who are not equipped to deal with these issues. By not talking about their feelings and pushing away the memories year after year, abuse victims develop significant mental health conditions that take a toll on their personal and professional lives.

    With more avenues to seek help and support nowadays, survivors are starting to realize how these conditions are connected to abuse of a sexual nature. The moment of discovery can happen at any age, but no matter when it occurs, the laws in California provide you with 5 years from the date of discovery to file a compensation claim.

    Contact Us to Receive Free Legal Services

    As a victim of childhood sexual abuse, you are entitled to free legal services if you would like to seek justice for the harm you suffered. At least that’s how we see it here at Kenmore Law Group, which is why we have a Zero Fee Guarantee. You pay $0 if you wish to hire us, and you continue to pay nothing for the entire duration of your case. That’s because the settlement you receive from the defendant includes the cost of legal fees. In other words, winning your case is the only way we get paid – guaranteed.

    To discuss the option of filing a lawsuit for sexual assault or harassment by a school bus driver, please contact our law firm.

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