Stabbing victims sue Snohomish School District
SNOHOMISH - The families of the victims of the two students stabbed at Snohomish High School last fall are suing Snohomish School District, Fairfax Hospital and the parents of the assailant claiming the attack was preventable.
April Lutz and Bekah Staudacher were stabbed multiple times inside a school bathroom by a now 16-year-old student who pleaded guilty in March and is serving a 13-year sentence.
The victims’ attorney Sim Osborn said the female assailant should have never been allowed back on campus, according to a KIRO FM report.
The girl has a history of mental illness and was suspended from school at one point for making threats to other students. She spent time at Fairfax Hospital before being deemed OK to return to school.
“Both the school and Fairfax Hospital fell asleep at the wheel when they allowed an unstable person, known to harbor violent impulses, to have free reign on campus,” Osborn said to KING 5. “The defendants failed to act to protect students and the public.”
According to court documents, school district staff told investigators that the girl had previously been suspended from school last spring in an unrelated incident in which she made death threats to another girl’s boyfriend.
Two female students reported that she “had become obsessed with them and wouldn’t let them have other friends,” charging papers say. She then threatened to kill a boyfriend of one of the girls and was told she could not return to school until she got professional counseling.
The school district said they received a letter from Fairfax Hospital in Kirkland at the end of April 2011 stating she was safe to return to school, charging papers say. The suspension in that incident began April 18, 2011, and the girl was allowed to return to school May 4, 2011.
Lutz was stabbed more than 20 times, one wound narrowly missing a major artery. Staudacher was stabbed in the arm and back while trying to help Lutz.