CMS files motion to dismiss 2016 sexual assault lawsuit

CHARLOTTE — The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education has filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit filed by a former Myers Park High School student.

In June, Serena Evans announced that she was suing the district for failing to address the culture that led to her alleged sexual assault.

In the lawsuit, Serena Evans alleges she began experiencing sexual harassment, including unwanted physical touching and verbal harassment, while she was a seventh-grade student at Alexander Graham Middle School.

Evans said the harassment continued and intensified when she started at Myers Park High in 2016.

“From the time she arrived on campus, [Evans] experienced unwelcome sexual advances from some male students who were emboldened by formal and informal ‘traditions’ at the school,” the document said.

Evans said in Oct. 2016, while waiting outside a classroom for a teacher, she was propositioned for sex by a male athlete. She said he kept verbally and physically harassing her at school after that day.

The suit said later that month, Evans said she was preparing for her tennis team’s match when the same person approached her. She froze in fear and that was when he took her to the bathroom, forced her into a stall, and raped her.

The complaint alleges after Evans’ mom filed a police report, she emailed then-principal Mark Bosco to report the assault, but he never replied. The school’s vice principal, Tyson Jeffus, was put in charge of Evans’ case.

The suit alleges that the attacker never faced any punishment. It also said neither Evans nor her mother were ever informed of their rights under Title IX, and they were never updated on the status of the investigation even after they repeatedly asked, the lawsuit alleges.

The lawsuit also detailed several stories from other students who said they were victims of sexual assault on CMS campuses.

On Friday, CMS filed a motion for dismissal “on the grounds that the district lacked jurisdiction over certain claims.” CMS also said there was a lack of personal jurisdiction over the board.

In the motion, the district argue that the board had “governmental immunity.”

Channel 9 reached out to the attorneys for Serena Evans for comment regarding the CMS’s filing.

A spokesperson released a statement saying:

“Our response is simply that we are confident we will beat CMS’s motion and the case will proceed to discovery.”

(WATCH BELOW: Former Myers Park HS student sues district for failing to prevent her sex assault)