CA - School Staff members charged in death of autistic student, 13, Max Benson, Nov 2018

Discussion in 'Crimes-Spotlight on Children' started by Swirlz, Nov 15, 2019.

  1. Swirlz

    Swirlz Well-Known Member

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    Three School Staff Members Charged Over Autistic Student's Death | News Radio 810 & 103.1 WGY

    Three former staff members of a now-closed special needs school in California have been charged in connection with the death of a 13-year-old boy who was autistic. Max Benson died in November 2018 after staff members at Guiding Hands School restrained him following a violent outburst.

    Cindy Keller, the school’s executive director, Staranne Meyers, the school's principal, and Kimberly Wohlwend, a special-education teacher, were each charged with felony involuntary manslaughter.
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  2. JerseyGirl

    JerseyGirl Forum Coordinator Staff Member Forum Coordinators

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    Trial in boy's death may be avoided as offer mulled

    A trial may not be necessary in the death of a 13-year-old boy who became unresponsive when placed under restraint at a private school in El Dorado Hills two years ago, after a, El Dorado County Superior Court judge learned this week there may be a plea arrangement pending.

    Three defendants showed up Aug. 25 in Judge Mark Ralphs’ courtroom, represented by Sacramento attorney Linda Parisi who told the court her clients and El Dorado County deputy district attorney Lisette Suder have been in talks regarding a possible settling of the matter.

    Defendants Cindy Keller, Staranne Meyers and Kimberly Wohlwend face charges of involuntary manslaughter in the Nov. 28, 2018, death of Max Benson, a student who reportedly had been restrained during a violent autistic episode at the K-12th grade Guiding Hands School two days prior to his dying at an area hospital.

    In court Tuesday, prosecutor Suder appeared on screen through Zoom and told the court that yes, as attorney Parisi indicated, with time for more discussion there very well could be an agreement reached that would negate the need for a trial.

    Saying that discussions have been ongoing if sporadic, Suder indicated that the DA’s Office is comfortable “leaving the offer open” until Oct. 13. Defendants are expected to let the court know that day whether they agree to what the DA’s Office finds suitable in the disposition of the case.

    Deputy DA Suder declined to state any details regarding the offer.

    The Oct. 13 appearance in Dept. 7 of Superior Court on Fair Lane in Placerville is set for 1 p.m.

    In addition to the criminal case, a private attorney has filed a civil action on behalf of Max Benson’s family.
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