An appeals court ruled today that a lawsuit filed by victims of former Schenectady City School District facility director and local CSEA union boss Steve Raucci, can continue against the school system.
Harold and Deborah Gray filed a lawsuit in May against the school district, which said Raucci’s actions outside of school were part of his “reign if terror,” and that the district knew what was going on and did nothing.
The school district argued that officials were not responsible for Raucci’s actions outside of school.
The decision issued Thursday by the Appellate Division of state Supreme Court in Albany dealt with the denial in state Supreme Court of the district’s earlier request to dismiss the Grays’ complaint.
Appeals judges said the low court “erred” in not dismissing a portion of the Gray’s claim that the district was responsible for intentionally inflicting emotional distress.
Raucci, 62, was convicted in spring 2010 of first-degree arson and 17 other counts. He is currently serving 23 years to life in state prison. The prosecution charged that Raucci was responsible for numerous criminal acts, including placing bombs on homes or cars, in a series of incidents intended to intimidate people he perceived as enemies or enemies of his friends.
The Grays knew Raucci through the union. Raucci blamed the Grays for a whistle-blowing letter and targeted them in several acts of vandalism and attempted intimidation, according to trial testimony.