Court throws out victim's lawsuit against a Utah school district over a teacher, 38, convicted of having sex with three teenage boys
- Utah Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit against?Davis County School District, saying the district was immune under state law?
- Complaint was filed by a former student who had sex with English teacher Brianne Altice when he was 16 years old?
- Altice, 38, pleaded guilty in 2015 to felony forcible sexual abuse and was sentenced to up to 30 years?
The Utah Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit filed against a local school district by a victim of a teacher who has been convicted of having sex with three male students.
The ruling upheld a district court's decision to reject the lawsuit concerning the sexual misconduct of Brianne Altice, who worked as an English teacher at Davis high School.
Judge Ryan Harris wrote in his 21-page opinion, which was released on Friday, that under state law, the Davis County School District was immune from suit.
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The Utah Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit against the Davis County School District over the sexual misconduct case of ex-English teacher Brianne Altice, pictured left in her mugshot in 2013, and right in court in January 2017?
The civil suit was filed by a former student who had sex with Altice when he was 16 years old
Altice pleaded guilty in 2015 to felony forcible sexual abuse and was sentenced to up to 30 years in prison, but she could be released as early as 2020.
In January of this year, Altice, 38, made a tearful plea begging the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole to release her, but her request was denied.
Altice admitted in a plea agreement that she had touched the genitals of a 16-year-old boy and two 17-year-old from January to September 2013.
All three teens testified that they had sexual intercourse with the teacher.
Two of the victims later filed lawsuits against Altice and the Davis School District, both of which have now been dismissed.
The lawsuits claimed that Davis High School was aware of Altice's inappropriate relationships with multiple students but did not fire her and protect them.
One of the suits said that the running joke in the high school was: 'Who is Ms Altice sleeping with now?'
Altice (pictured in 2014) pleaded guilty in 2015 to felony forcible sexual abuse and was sentenced to up to 30 years in prison
Altice was first arrested in October 2013 when the 16-year-old victim reported having a relationship with her. The two additional victims then came forward.
The former teacher was defiant following her initial arrest, claiming at the time that the boy 'wore down her defenses' and 'ultimately broke down her resistance'.
Altice's victim claimed the relationship began after they exchanged numbers and flirted during class. They ultimately started kissing and having sex.
Court documents state that the students often skipped class to spend their days with Altice, and that she confided in them about her marital problems.
Altice fired back at the claims from prison with a two-page letter in which she lashed out at the parents of one of her victims, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.
In the letter, Altice claimed the parents had failed to attend her parent-teacher conferences and said their son often complained about his strained relationship with them.
She also shot down claims that she wore 'risque' clothing in the classroom saying that there she had never received any complaints about her work attire.
Altice was ordered to jail at the time after it was revealed she had sex with a third victim while out on bail for her 2013 arrest.
Sentencing guidelines suggest Altice remain behind bars until January 2020, but the ultimate decision was left to the parole board.
Sentencing guidelines suggest Altice, pictured in 2015, remain behind bars until January 2020
Altice's husband divorced her following her 2013 arrest and has custody of their two children.
In his ruling last week, the appeals court judge said that the plaintiff, who was 16 years ago at the time of his tryst with Altice, argued that ‘the District knew, or at least should have known, that Teacher “had been previously terminated from former employment due to sexual misconduct.”’
The lawsuit accused the district of being negligent in its hiring, supervision and retention of the English teacher, especially after reprimanding Altice, according to the complaint, for engaging in ‘inappropriate contacts with students.’
The school district argued that under the Governmental Immunity Act of Utah, it was not responsible for any damages caused by Altice, and the appeals court sided with the defendant.
‘It might seem counterintuitive that our law provides no civil remedy against a school district that is alleged to have negligently hired and retained a teacher who has illegal sexual contact with her minor students. But this conclusion is, in our view, compelled by the Act and by Utah Supreme Court precedent,’ the decision states.?
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