A boy has been awarded $6.9 million by a jury after it found that he was molested by his elementary school teacher in the Los Angeles Unified School District.
The jury found the district liable for the 2008 molestation case involving teacher Forrest Stobbe at Queen Anne Place Elementary School. Stobbe pleaded no contest last year to lewd acts on a child and continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14.
The $6.9 million awarded to the boy is among the largest for a single victim in the history of the district. The high-profile allegations against another teacher from Miramonte Elementary School has caused the district to seek settlement for abuse suits involving nearly 200 plaintiffs, The Associated Press reported.
Though Stobbe had a clean criminal record prior to his conviction, the jury rules that the district should have listened to complaints made against the teacher prior to the molestation case.
The 14-year-old boy awarded $6.9 million in the case had been molested when he was a fifth-grade student, the Los Angeles Times reported.
Stobbe molested the boy starting in October 2008 and continued to abuse him until the following July when he was arrested. He befriended the boy to earn his trust, then molested him in the classroom in increasingly brazen and invasive episodes, the Los Angeles Times reported.
The teacher also became close to the boy’s family and bought the boy season passes to amusement parks where he would also molest the boy. When the family asked the boy if he wanted Stobbe to become his godfather, the boy told his father of the abuse.
Police found evidence to support the claims of the boy awarded $6.9 million. His DNA was found inside a jar of petroleum jelly in the man’s school desk. The boy told police that Stobbe used the jelly as a lubricant during sex acts, the Los Angeles Times reported.