$575,000 Verdict and Settlement: Negligent Hiring – Sexual Misconduct
McFarland v. School Services and Leasing
Chrystal McFarland sued School Services & Leasing for negligent hiring, retention and supervision and respondent superior liability after she was touched and kissed on the cheek by a school bus driver.
McFarland, 17, was coming home from basketball practice at a St. Louis magnet school. She claimed that after all the other students had been dropped off, the driver, Albert George, held her against her will for several minutes, kissed her on the cheek and touched her thigh. There were no witnesses. She claimed she suffered humiliation, embarrassment and emotional distress, for which she was treated by a psychiatrist.
McFarland presented evidence that the driver had prior arrests for sexual misconduct which he did not disclose to School Services. The company argued lack of agency and lack of knowledge of its driver’s history and propensities.
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