Time is supposed to heal all wounds. But that’s not the case for Eric Giray, who claims he was beaten by a school bully eight years ago — and has just filed a $1.5 million lawsuit against the school and the alleged bully.
Giray, now 19 and a sophomore at Brandeis University, alleges a fellow student bullied him for years while they attended the Calhoun School, a prestigious institution on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Giray’s suit names the bully and the school, which Giray claims was negligent, the New York Daily News reports.
So why did Giray wait eight years to sue the school and his alleged bully?
“Apparently they had spoken to an attorney at the time of the incident, who told them that filing a lawsuit like this could impact negatively on his ability to get into a college or university of his choice,” Eric Giray’s lawyer told New York’s 1010 WINS radio.
New York laws impose a three-year statute of limitations for civil personal-injury and negligence claims. But for injury victims who are children, the statute of limitations does not take effect until the child turns 18. So in Giray’s case, he had until age 21 to file his civil claims.
Giray’s alleged bully beating happened in October 2004, when classmate Daniel Dworakowski allegedly shoved Giray into the bleachers; Giray’s nose was broken and he got 18 stitches, according to the Daily News. Dworakowski also allegedly bullied Giray by calling him “gay” and making fun of Giray’s “elephant ears.”
Giray’s mother wrote an email to school administrators, who did not follow up, Giray’s lawsuit asserts. Calhoun School officials also failed to protect Giray and failed to institute an anti-bullying policy, the suit claims.
Alleged bully Dworakowski is now a sophomore at Cornell University. “Oh please, that was not a bullying,” Dworakowski’s mother told the Daily News. “A teacher told us it was an accident and nothing else.”
A jury may ultimately decide if she’s correct, or if Eric Giray’s alleged bully beating deserves compensation. But chances are Giray’s $1.5 million school-bullying lawsuit will be settled out of court.
- Teen Sues Prep School, Classmate Over Alleged Bullying (New York’s WNBC-TV)
- State Civil Statute of Limitations Laws (FindLaw)
- Are Bullying Lawsuits on the Rise? (FindLaw’s Law and Daily Life)
- Dharun Ravi Convicted in Tyler Clementi Webcam Case (FindLaw’s Blotter)