Monterey, CA – Dunnion Law, the California personal injury firm representing two students injured in last year’s shooting at Seaside High School, today filed a complaint for damages with the Superior Court of California.
The complaint against the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District (MPUSD), the City of Sand City, and Dennis Alexander seeks damages for the decisions that are believed to have led to the shooting. The students had tried to resolve their cases out of court by making its claims directly with MPUSD and Sand City, Alexander’s former employers. The two government entities rejected the students’ claims in their entirety, forcing the students to file this lawsuit as their only recourse.
Despite several law enforcement policies, California safety laws, and parental concerns emailed to Alexander about students handling a firearm in class, the complaint states Alexander repeatedly brought his police-issued Glock 21 handgun to the classroom, and allowed students to handle it. According to the police report of the shooting, Alexander’s students reported that he had brought the firearm to his classroom on multiple occasions in the past two years, and that he had allowed students to pass the gun around.
“Mr. Alexander’s actions, and the inactions of the employers responsible for supervising his work, unnecessarily placed Seaside students in harm’s way,” said Connell Dunnion, Esq., Owner and CEO of Dunnion Law. “By holding accountable those who’ve let these students down, we can inspire changes to school policies and procedures that can create a safer environment for our schoolchildren.”
According to the complaint, on March 13, 2018, Alexander, an Administration of Justice teacher at Seaside High School, had planned two demonstrations for his class. The first demonstration was designed to illustrate a hand-to-hand combat maneuver showing the difficulty of removing the weapon from a police officer’s holster. The second demonstration would teach students how to disarm a mugger pointing a pistol at them. As noted in the complaint, neither of these demonstrations is part of the class curriculum.
In the process of preparing the firearm for these demonstrations, Alexander fired the weapon toward the ceiling to assure students that the weapon was not loaded. Instead, a hollow point round that Alexander failed to remove from the chamber hit a steel beam and burst into shrapnel, striking the two students named as Plaintiffs in the complaint.
The complaint filed by Dunnion Law requests a trial by jury. Defendants have 30 days from the date the lawsuit is served to respond.