Barstow High School Teacher Who Died from COVID-19 Leaves Behind Allegations of Child Sexual Abuse

Irvine, California – Attorneys representing an alleged victim of recently deceased Barstow High School Teacher Katherine O’Neill announced the filing of new allegations against additional Barstow Unified School District employees and Administrators.  Click Here for complaint:

O’Neil was arrested in March 2019 by San Bernardino County Authorities on suspicion of having a sexual relationship with the Jane LD Doe, the plaintiff in this case.  According to the Sheriff’s Department, O’Neill did have an intimate relationship with the girl and had sent explicit text messages that contained obscene material. It has been reported that O’Neill died last Thursday of COVID-19.

During investigations into Ms. O’Neill it has been alleged that she had more than five victims over a twenty year time period.  These investigations had led to allegations that in the late 2000s, Barstow High School Principal, Scott Godfrey, received notification of the risk that O’Neill was presenting to students of potential sexual abuse.  Despite reporting, Ms. O’Neill remained a teacher within the District for ten more years to allegedly abuse several more students.

Similar investigations have revealed that former Assistant Principal Dr. Amy McDonald and her Secretary Laura Moore, permitted O’Neill to sign a form representing that O’Neill was authorized to give permission for a victim to leave campus.  O’Neill is alleged to have represented that she was the parent or guardian of minors and this was never verified by the administrators allowing O’Neill the opportunity to remove the student from campus. 

 These allegations have recently resulted in the naming as Defendants of Scott Godfrey, Dr. Amy McDonald, and Laura Moore.  Mr. Godfrey is currently an Assistant Principal within Barstow Unified and Dr. Amy McDonald is currently Principal at Skyline North Elementary School.

Morgan Stewart, the victims’ attorney, stated, “Katherine O’Neil’s twenty-year history of predatory behavior was an open secret among administrators at Barstow High School. She routinely sought out vulnerable girls and tried to exploit weaknesses so she could abuse them.  Administrators not only ignored red flags and parent complaints, but they also facilitated the abuse by violating school by providing passes without parental consent which allowed O’Neill to leave campus with our client and sexually abuse her.”  He added, “This is the very nature of a school district that has failed its students.”

Manly, Stewart & Finaldi is the nation’s leading firm representing athletes in child sexual abuse cases against school districts, Universities and Olympic Governing Bodies. They recently represented 180 alleged victims of former Olympic Team doctor Larry Nassar resulting in a $500 million-dollar settlement against Michigan State University. In 2018 the firm settled cases against the Torrance Unified School District for $31 million on behalf of alleged victims of former wrestling coach and convicted child molester Thomas Snider, against Los Angeles Unified School district for $8 million in cases involving former football coach and convicted child molester Jamie Jimenez and for $14 million in cases involving former Los Angeles Unified District employee Ronnie Lee Roman.

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