TUPELO – The mother of a Tupelo schools female student claims in a new federal lawsuit that officials and law enforcement failed to investigate a bullying incident before putting her daughter in jail and strip-searching her.
The Daily Journal is not using the mother’s name, although it is on the lawsuit document, because the minor student’s name would be obvious to others.
Defendants in the lawsuit are Lee County, the City of Tupelo, Tupelo Public School District and Dr. Kristy Luse, Jon Bramble, and John and Jane Does 1-5. They have yet to respond to the allegations because the lawsuit was just filed this week.
Luse is principal at Tupelo Middle School, and Bramble is a Tupelo police officer.
The lawsuit is just one side of a story.
In the 12-page document, filed by Tupelo attorney Victor Fleitas, the girl’s mother claims the daughter was injured in a bullying incident Nov. 10, 2010 then arrested because of the school policy of “zero-tolerance” for misbehavior without due process.
It also claims the girl was taken to the Lee County Juvenile Detention Center and subjected to a strip-search before her mother could secure her release.
The lawsuit seeks actual, compensatory and punitive damages, as well as court costs and attorney’s fees.