By Caroline Downey, National Review
Loudoun County (Va.) Public Schools responded Wednesday to a bombshell report that it covered up a sexual assault perpetrated by a “gender fluid” male student in the girls’ bathroom.
The victim’s father, Scott Smith, was arrested during a school board meeting in June before he could describe what had happened to his daughter. In a statement released Wednesday, the district claimed that the school board was ignorant of the details at the time of the meeting and only learned of the alleged rape through the Daily Wire’s recent report.
Moreover, the district wrote that it was obliged to defer the initial criminal investigation to local law enforcement, which received a report on May 28 when Smith says the assault occurred, before it conducted a probe of its own.
“To maintain the integrity of the criminal investigation, law enforcement requested that LCPS not interview students until their investigation is concluded. LCPS has cooperated and continues to cooperate with law enforcement,” the statement read.
Also referenced was the formal Title IX grievance process, which LCPS insisted it must follow before disciplining any alleged perpetrator, although it clarified that it does “impose interim measures to protect the safety of students involved in the original incident, deter retaliation…”
According to a provision on the grievance process, “The burden of gathering evidence and burden of proof must remain on schools, not on the parties.”
While Smith claimed he was scheduled to speak at the June 22 meeting, to share his daughter’s testimony and oppose a policy on the district docket to force faculty to address students by their preferred gender pronouns, the statement said LCPS found no record that he was registered in advance to speak. The school superintendent Scott Ziegler dismissed criticisms of the policy during the meeting as well as denied that student sexual misconduct had happened in a Loudoun County school.
“…the predator transgender student or person simply does not exist,” Ziegler said. To his knowledge, he added, “we don’t have any record of assaults occurring in our restrooms.”
“If someone would have sat and listened for thirty seconds to what Scott had to say, they would have been mortified and heartbroken,” Scott’s attorney, Elizabeth Lancaster told the Daily Wire.
At meeting Tuesday night, over 60 outraged parents and students confronted the Loudoun County school board to demand that it fire the superintendent and then resign as a panel in the wake of the sexual assault development, Fox News reports.
“This is not China, this is the United States of America, and we will not be silenced,” a mother exclaimed. “Remove the superintendent immediately and then resign for your negligence and duplicity. End this nightmare!”
Read more at National Review.