BREAKING NEWS:  May 4, 2017–Lawyers for the family of “Girl Doe” in the case of Girl Doe PPA v. Wilton Board of Education et al., have filed an “Offer of Compromise” to “fully resolve all claims” in their lawsuit against the Wilton Board of Education and the Town of Wilton. In that filing, they ask for $4,250,000 to resolve claims of the minor plaintiff “Girl Doe” and $500,000 each for Girl Doe’s mother and father, for a total of $5,250,000.

In addition, two other filings were made today, disclosing that the plaintiffs intend to call two expert witnesses who they say “…may be called to render expert opinions” in the case.

The first witness is Eileen C. Treacy, Ph.D., a psychologist who specializes in applied developmental psychology and “independent court expert in the areas of sexual abuse and assault and developmental psychology.” The filing states that Treacy is expected to testify about her evaluation of Girl Doe following testing and interviews of the girl and her parents.

The filling states, “Dr. Treacy will testify as to and her knowledge and opinions about the cause, nature and degree of Girl Doe’s traumatic injury and related residual effects. Dr. Treacy will also offer opinions that her evaluation of Girl Doe demonstrates overwhelming evidence that Girl Doe was sexually assaulted by the school paraprofessional Eric von Kohorn.”

The filing states that Treacy’s examination revealed it is “highly likely” that Girl Doe was sexually assaulted by von Kohorn and that the girl has experienced “strong negative impact of trauma from the assault and her continued exposure” to the paraprofessional for months after reporting the alleged assault.

Treacy would also testify as to the impact the incidents have had on Girl Doe’s parents, that her mother “demonstrate[s] strong feelings of betrayal by the Wilton Public School system” and that both have suffered “secondary victimization.”

The second expert witness the plaintiffs’ attorneys intend to call is Sharon Cooper, MD, a North Carolina pediatrician, staff developmental and forensic pediatrician, as well as a professor of pediatrics at the University of North Carolina’s medical school.

According to the filing, Cooper evaluated Girl Doe and her parents and will offer expert opinion on “causation and damages.” Specifically she will testify about the “nature and degree of Girl Doe’s traumatic injury and related residual effects, the impact the assault has had on the family and how that affects Girl Doe.”

The filing states that Girl Doe has “suffered neurodevelopmental disruption” from the alleged sexual abuse and psychological damage from “rejection of her efforts to disclose her abuse.” In addition, it states that Girl Doe was “particularly vulnerable to suffering severe effects of child sexual abuse as a result of her special educational needs that existed before the abuse,” which “left her more vulnerable to being abused [as well as] to suffering severe and lasting impact.”

Among the effects Cooper says have followed the incident are “exacerbation and amplication of issues related to poor focus, attention and hyperkenesis…bouts of significant anxiety…feelings of inadequacy and aversion and strong negative reaction to adult males” who physically resemble von Kohorn.

The filing also asserts that Girl Doe will face “significantly elevated risk of significant emotional setbacks at key developmental stages of her life when anxieties will be triggered,”–adolescence, in partner relationships, during pregnancy and in parenthood. It states that Girl Doe will likely have “many difficulties in her life that she otherwise would have been unlikely to experience.”

Cooper will testify that Girl Doe will require ongoing treatment throughout her life, as well as the impact the alleged events have had on Girl Doe’s parents, which continue to negatively impact Girl Doe’s experience.

Emails have been sent to town officials and attorneys for comment.

UPDATE:  10:20 p.m.–In an email to GMW, first selectman Lynne Vanderslice said she declined to comment on an ongoing lawsuit. Board of Education chair Bruce Likly stated, “I’m sorry, I have no first hand knowledge of the facts of the case and have no active involvement in it nor do any members of the Board therefore we are not in a position to comment on your inquiry.”