A Catholic School teacher in San Jose is probably sleeping a little sounder this week after winning a defamation lawsuit with prurient implications.
Tweens Cause Torment For Gym Teacher
This case and trial sounds like a sub-plot from the movie “Saved”. In summary, a group of girls at the Holy Spirit school in Almaden Valley accused a gym teacher, John Fischler, of being a “perv” and “creeper” who was peeking into the female locker room when he shouldn’t have been.
As you might imagine, the accusations spread like wildfire through the community and caused tremendous torment for Fischler and family. Adamant that the accusations were the fabrications of mean girls, he decided to sue.
Gym Teachers Says, “Oh Yeah!? See You In Court!”
So off to the Santa Clara County Superior Court the parties went to argue their points. According to reports, during the trial, one of the accusers left the witness stand to perform cheerleading moves for the jury. The impromptu show flopped. Instead of finding the routine cute, the jurors sat stone faced, visibly put off by the girl’s demeanor. They also weren’t impressed by the defendants’ propensity to giggle during proceedings.
Ultimately, after both sides rested their cases, the 12 jurors ruled in favor of the teacher to the tune of $362,653.
Gym Teacher: 1; Tweens: 0
The decision was mostly on the fact that the parents didn’t take their complaints to the school immediately. Instead, they took the rumourmongering route. The jury wondered: if children were being subjected to sexual inappropriateness from a teacher, wouldn’t the parents make a bee line for the principal’s office? Moreover, law enforcement and school officials eventually investigated the matter and cleared Fischler of all charges. Yet, the gossiping parents continued with their loud whisper campaign.
Who Has To Pay Since The Defendants Were Minors?
It’s unlikely that 10 and 11 year old girls have a few hundred thousand lying around in case of legal emergency. So who has to pay the damages? Guess what folks: the parents are financially responsible. #sayonarasanta
What can we learn from this defamation case?
- Don’t giggle in court;
- Refrain from engaging in impromptu performances during legal proceedings; and
- Steer clear of your community’s gossip mill – especially after an allegation has and law enforcement officials have cleared the suspect.
Do you need a defamation attorney? Contact Kelly Warner Law today.