Father sues St. Johnsville school district over son’s injuries at dance

Sunday, May 27, 2012
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— The father of a local student injured in a fight at a school function last year is suing the St. Johnsville Central School district, alleging the district is at fault for the boy’s injuries.

Jason Dillenbeck of St. Johnsville filed the action in state Supreme Court, Montgomery County, on May 11.

Dillenbeck alleges his son, Anthony Dillenbeck, 12 years old at the time of the incident, was at a school dance on Sept. 23, 2011 when a fellow student of similar age assaulted him, according to the complaint.

The suit, filed by Gloversville attorney Robert Abdella, alleges Dillenbeck suffered “serious injury” in the assault.

Efforts to reach the Dillenbecks were unsuccessful.

Abdella declined comment on the boy’s current condition, but court papers allege he was “rendered sick, sore, lame and disable[d] and still continues to be sick, sore, lame and disabled.”

Dillenbeck contends his son was not responsible for the confrontation and the district should have known that “[the assailant] posed a threat of unreasonable danger and risk of injury” to students, including his son.

“[The] defendant carelessly failed to adequately monitor said student,” the suit reads, “and carelessly failed to provide for the safety of the infant plaintiff herein.”

St. Johnsville Superintendent Ralph Acquaro declined comment except to say that the case is in the hands of New York Schools Insurance Reciprocal.

“They handle everything like this,” he said.

NYSIR representatives could not be reached for comment on the case.

The lawsuit follows a Dec. 8 “pre-action” hearing in which Dillenbeck found no satisfaction.

State law requires a pre-action hearing before any lawsuit when a notice of claim is filed against any municipal entity, including school districts.

Dillenbeck is seeking unspecified damages.

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