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NC Court of Appeals Rules for Avery Schools PDF Print
Written by Steve Frank   
Monday, 30 July 2012 11:55

The N.C. Court of Appeals ruled last week unanimously in favor of the Avery County school board in a lawsuit filed by a former student. The girl alleged she was sexually abused by a school resource officer in incidents between 2005 and 2007while at Avery High School. The Asheville Citizen-Times reports that the court found the school system had governmental immunity from liability and ordered the case remanded to Avery County Superior Court for a summary judgment in favor of the school system. The suit claimed Michael Darcy, who was 43 at the time, sexually assaulted the girl—15 at the time—in his office at Avery County High School. Darcy was arrested on federal charges in 2009, charged with transporting the girl from North Carolina to South Carolina with intent to engage in sexual activity and traveling out of the state for the purpose of engaging in illicit sexual conduct. He was convicted and sentenced to prison, according to federal court records. The lawsuit also alleged that the school principal saw the student and resource officer together at dinner and questioned them about their relationship, and that Avery Sheriff Kevin Frye “knew or should have known of the substantial risk” Darcy posed to the student.” The suit against the Avery Sheriff’s Department was not appealed and is also dismissed. An appeal to the N.C. Supreme Court is not automatic because the Appeals Court ruling was unanimous.


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