Former Gaithersburg High School wrestler awarded $4 million in damages in sexual assault case

Weeks after Montgomery County Public Schools settled a shocking sexual assault case brought by former Damascus High School football players, there’s a multi-million dollar judgment in another sexual assault case at Gaithersburg High School. 

A former student —  who’s not named in court documents —  sued MCPS, claiming he was sexually assaulted by other students in the Gaithersburg High School locker room. 

After a week-long trial in front of Judge Kevin Hessler, the student’s lawyer told FOX 5, the jury sided with the student, and awarded him $4 million in damages.

Court papers detailed that the sexual assault happened when "John Doe" was a freshman on Gaithersburg’s wrestling team. 

The attack took place in 2018 and the suit was filed in 2020. 

GAITHERSBURG, MD, AUGUST 26, 2013: The newly finished and opened Gaithersburg High School. (Photo by Astrid Riecken For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Montgomery Parents Coalition leader Janis Zink Sartucci told FOX 5 that, once again, Montgomery County school officials refuse to speak out on the case.

"We have one very clear pattern here in Montgomery County, and that clear pattern is of the adults in charge hiding," he said. "We don’t see them speaking about these cases. We don’t see them standing up for victims. We don’t see them supporting the victims in any way, shape or form."

FOX 5 reached out to Montgomery County Public Schools and received no reply. 

The attorneys for the plaintiff also declined an interview, telling FOX 5 their client wants to remain anonymous. 


Montgomery County Schools to pay $9.7M in Damascus sex assault settlement

A massive payout is going to the victims of a 2018 sexual assault scandal at Damascus High School.

Some parents at Gaithersburg High told FOX 5 - even five years later - they’re still concerned because school is a place where kids are supposed to be safe. 

Despite the jury finding that Montgomery County Public Schools failed to protect the former student who was sexually assaulted, on Tuesday attorneys for the school district filed a motion to defer the $4 million judgment. 

The lawyer for the student told FOX 5 he was not surprised by that move.