MASON, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – A federal lawsuit filed by the mother of an Ingham County high school female student alleges Mason High School administrators failed to protect her daughter after a sexual assault at school. The lawsuit alleges the school reinstated the boy who sexually assaulted her because his parents have “significant influence” in the county.

The lawsuit alleges the boy digitally penetrated the then-13-year-old girl while both attended a middle school class in May 2022. It states a similar incident happened a few days later. Both students are minors. The girl reported the alleged assault; police investigated as did school officials, in accordance with Title IX.

MORE NEWS: Crashes Involving Pedestrians, Bikes Increasing

The lawsuit states that the accused is the son of Ingham County Clerk Barb Byrum (D) and Ingham County Sheriff’s Det. Sergeant Brad Delaney. The school board expelled their son because he violated not only school policy but also Michigan law, which says, “if a pupil…. commits a criminal sexual conduct in a school building or on school
grounds… against another pupil in the same school district, the school board shall expel the pupil from the school district permanently…” [sic]

Byrum and Delaney applied for reinstatement the following year. Upon his return, Principal Lance Delbridge and Assistant Principal Nicholas Toodzio issued a “no-contact” order between both students.

“The practical effect of the ‘No Contact Order’ essentially treats [the girl] as if she was equally blameworthy for the incident in the 8th grade and precluded her from traversing down certain hallways, hanging around classrooms or lockers of [the boy], avoiding face-to-face contact, and to avoid contact with each other during passing time, lunch time, or extracurricular activities,” the lawsuit stated. “However, E.M. continues to see B.D. daily in the halls, lunchrooms, and extracurricular activities for school.”

A Personal Protection Order (PPO) against the boy has been renewed. The lawsuit claims, “allowing [the boy] back in Mason Public Schools, failing to discipline [him] when he violated the No-Contact Order,” and failing to keep the two students apart in addition to not holding the boy accountable forces the girl to “re-live this traumatic situation” which it says has impacted her grades.

The lawsuit is seeking $75,000 in damages plus costs, interest, and attorney fees.

Read the entire lawsuit below.

MORE NEWS: Hunter Safety Education Week Kicks Off Aug. 12