Wyalusing Academy lawsuit
Mother files lawsuit on
behalf of son paralyzed at Wyalusing Academy
By Ted Pennekamp
The mother of a boy paralyzed following an incident at Wyalusing Academy June 24 and June 25, 2013 filed a lawsuit on Nov. 19 in Crawford County Circuit Court seeking monetary relief in amounts to be determined at trial.
Kathleen Faichney of Dike, Iowa, and her 15-year-old son, who was 14 at the time of the incident, are named as plaintiffs in the lawsuit. Clinicare Corporation of West Allis, Wis., the owners of Wyalusing Academy, and Clinicare President David Fritsch of Waterford, Wis., are named as defendants.
Clinicare and Fritsch have 45 days to submit a written answer regarding the lawsuit to the Crawford County Courthouse.
The lawsuit alleges that Wyalusing Academy employees “improperly and forcefully restrained BC (the boy), slammed BC to the ground, acted improperly, and failed to act in care of BC,” all of which resulted in severe and permanent injuries.
The suit says that BC suffered a spinal fracture and a spinal cord injury, which have left him paralyzed from the mid-chest down. BC has been hospitalized since the incident and is currently in Lakeview Specialty Hospital and Rehabilitation Center in Waterford, Wis.
In addition to paralysis, the lawsuit also alleges that BC suffers from depression, severe mental suffering, and post traumatic stress disorder, and in the future will continue to suffer from the same.
The lawsuit states that BC’s “severe and permanent injuries occurred as a direct and proximate result of Clinicare’s wrongful actions and inactions.” The suit alleges that Wyalusing Academy employees failed to seek medical care for BC for more than 24 hours and that the incident involved “malicious assaults and/or an intentional disregard for the rights of BC.”
The lawsuit says that BC will require extensive medical care and asks that BC be awarded damages in an amount to be determined at trial.
The suit also alleges that Wyalusing Academy employees intentionally inflicted severe emotional distress upon BC and that their actions constituted “extreme, outrageous, intentional, and reckless conduct,” for which BC should be award damages in an amount to be determined.
The suit further states that BC’s “mother will be deprived of BC’s aid, comfort, society, companionship, and enjoyment of raising BC.” Therefore, BC’s mother should be awarded damages in an amount to be determined at trial.
The lawsuit also seeks punitive damages so that Clinicare Corporation does not have another incident such as this in the future. The suit also seeks attorney’s fees, and other relief as the court deems proper.
Documents from the Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF) indicate that an employee of Wyalusing Academy lost his balance and fell to the ground with BC on June 24, 2013. DCF documents also indicate that BC was left to sleep overnight on two separate hard floors without a mattress, pillow or blankets.
According to the DCF’s 90-Day Summary Report, on June 24, BC was also placed in a series of physical holds during which he was injured. He was not medically assessed after the holds. The child complained at various times throughout the day and evening of pain, numbness and weakness. Despite his complaints, no medical assessment was completed. The next morning the child told staff he could not move his legs and they were numb. The child was evaluated by medical staff and an ambulance was called, but not immediately, which further delayed medical treatment for his injuries.
Wyalusing Academy has been closed since Nov. 8 after having relinquished its license in lieu of revocation.