A second Wilton family has filed suit against Wilton and the Wilton Board of Education, alleging that former Wilton preschool paraprofessional Eric Von Kohorn sexually exploited their son in 2013-14, when the boy was enrolled in Miller-Driscoll Preschool Services during the time Von Kohorn worked there.
Von Kohorn was hired to work at the M-D preschool in 2007, and worked with preschool students until his arrest by Connecticut State Police on August 20, 2014. Von Kohorn was charged with first-degree possession of child pornography and promoting a minor in an obscene performance; he later pled guilty to reduced charge of illegal possession of child pornography in the second degree. He was sentenced in Oct. 2015 to six years in prison, suspended after two years served, and 10 years probation.
Silver Golub & Teitell LLP, the law firm representing the boy and his family, issued a press release about the lawsuit, which was filed in Stamford Superior Court on Monday, Nov. 21.
The family’s lawers, Paul Slager and Michael Kennedy, are the same attorneys who represent the first family that sued the town of Wilton and the Wilton Board of Education, alleging their daughter was sexually assaulted by Von Kohorn in a Miller-Driscoll bathroom.
According to the press release, “This second lawsuit alleges that Von Kohorn took the male student alone into a Miller-Driscoll school bathroom and photographed him in the bathroom stall while the child’s pants were down. The family is unaware what Von Kohorn did with the images or whether and where the images were distributed, which, according to the lawsuit, is a source of considerable distress for the family.”
The complaint alleges, among other things, that:
(1) in January 2013, Wilton Board of Education staff members received a report from the parents of a female Miller-Driscoll preschool student – the student whose family brought the first lawsuit against Wilton related to Von Kohorn — that she had reported being sexually assaulted by Von Kohorn in a school bathroom and that the parents had noticed visible injuries and irritation to her genital area (paragraph 8);
(2) during the school’s investigation, Von Kohorn initially denied taking the girl – who was fully toilet-trained – alone into the bathroom, and then, in a second interview, admitted he had lied during the first interview and that he actually had taken the girl alone into the bathroom, despite the fact she did not require assistance toileting (paragraphs 10-12);
(3) Miller Driscoll’s Director, Dr. Fred Rapczynski, notified the Human Resources department of the Wilton Board of Education of these facts after receiving the report from the parents and interviewing Von Kohorn (paragraphs 13-14);
(4) Dr. Rapczynski also reported the incidents to the Department of Child and Family Services (DCF), including the fact that his own investigation “did not support the girl’s claims,” after which DCF made Dr. Rapczynksi aware that the DCF would not be performing its own investigation into the matter based on Dr. Rapczynski’s report (paragraph 16);
(5) the Board of Education performed no further investigation of its own into the alleged sexual abuse of the female student and did not discipline, suspend or reprimand Von Kohorn in any way (paragraphs 15 and 17); and,
(6) the Board of Education instead removed Von Kohorn from the girl’s classroom and then placed him into another classroom where he continued to work directly with other Miller-Driscoll preschool students, including the male student in the current case (paragraph 18).
The complaint further alleges that the boy–the plaintiff in the second lawsuit–was a student in the preschool class to which Von Kohorn was reassigned, after Dr. Rapczynski and the Board of Education knew of the female student’s reports of sexual abuse (paragraph 20). After Von Kohorn began working in the boy’s classroom, the case states, Von Kohorn took the boy alone to the bathroom, where he photographed him with his pants down (paragraph 26).
The plaintiff does not specify the amount of damages sought in the case. The family’s attorney, Paul Slager, stated, “the allegations in the lawsuit speak for themselves” and declined further comment citing the sensitive nature of the case.