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Virginia Officials Call for Investigation into School District’s Handling of Sexual Assault Incidents

  Amanda Casanova | Contributor | Thursday, October 28, 2021
Virginia Officials Call for Investigation into School District’s Handling of Sexual Assault Incidents

Virginia state officials are calling for an investigation into how a Virginia school district handled a sexual assault incident at a Loudoun County high school.

This week, a 14-year-old was found guilty on charges of sexual assault after he met another student in a bathroom stall at Stone Bridge High School and allegedly sexually assaulted the other student. The incident happened in May 2021.

The 14-year-old had transferred to Stone Bridge High School from Broad Run High School following a complaint that he had also sexually assaulted another classmate in October 2020.

The 14-year-old will face charges in that sexual assault case in November. The student faces charges of sexual battery and abduction of another student.

Meanwhile, critics say the Loudon County school board mishandled the incidents. At a June school board meeting held to discuss a policy about transgender students, superintendent Scott Ziegler said there had been no assaults in restrooms.

Ziegler has since said he misunderstood the question in June and said there are shortcomings with the reporting process.

Five former attorney generals are asking current Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring to open an investigation into that process.

“Parents have a right to know when sexual assaults occur in their school systems, yet Democrats pushed through legislation that told our local school systems not to report sexual assaults,” the letter to Herring says. “The actions of Loudoun County and the inaction of the attorney general demonstrate a pattern of indifference toward sexual assaults in our schools and, worse yet, the intimidation of parents that want to be involved in the education and safety of their children.”

According to ABC 7 News, during a recent school board meeting, parents demanded that Ziegler be fired from his role and that board members step down.

Earlier in the day, students walked out of classrooms at Stone Bridge, Loudoun County High School, Briar Woods High School, Broad Run High School and Lightridge High School.

During the Broad Run walkout, students chanted, “Loudon County protects rapists.”

Photo courtesy: Pixabay

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and She blogs at The Migraine Runner.