Chardon Victims’ Families File Lawsuit Against District

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

CHARDON, Ohio — Families of the students shot in the Chardon High School shootings have filed a lawsuit against a long list of defendants, including Chardon Local Schools.

The lawsuit also names The Lake Academy Alternative School, where the gunman attended class.

Thursday marks two years since the tragedy at Chardon High School.

Russell King Jr., 17, Danny Parmertor, 16, and Demetrius Hewlin, 16, were killed and Nick Walczak was shot and paralyzed in the February 2012 shootings.

The gunman pleaded guilty in February 2013 and was given three life sentences without parole.

The lawsuit alleges that the defendants were “negligent, reckless and willfully indifferent” to the safety and security of Chardon students by failing to provide proper security.

It also alleges that Lake Academy failed to properly evaluate the gunman and “failed to warn others of his mental instability and his at-risk propensity to commit violent acts toward others.”

The grandparents of the shooter are also named for allowing the gunman to have access to more than 30 guns in their home.

The lawsuit asks for compensatory damages and punitive damages.

Chardon Local School District’s Supt. Michael Hanlon released the following statement Thursday regarding the lawsuit:

β€œThe Chardon Local School District has been made aware of a lawsuit filed today (in) Lake County Common Pleas Court. We have not yet fully reviewed the complaint. Because this is now a legal matter, it would be inappropriate for the District to comment. Our focus today has been on supporting our students, staff and the community on this important day.”

Stick with Fox 8 and for more on this developing story.

**Click here for extended coverage**


  • amanda

    soooo more money is going to make this better?? and prevent this from happening again somewhere else. wow that’s messed up. and the lawyers that are involved should also be ashamed of themselves.

  • truth hurts

    hey those people could not have predicted that kid was gonna go postal. this is just a money grab by the families. It will not bring back your kid, it will not prevent this in the future, at best this will just allow the families to buy new houses and suv’s on the backs of the taxpayers.

  • chris

    There is no known defense against the unpredictable actions of a madman. As tragic as this was I can’t see how more “security” would have stopped it. While we must remain vigilant in keeping our children safe, we cannot allow ourselves to live in constant fear, turning our schools into “forts” or worse, prisons.
    Money won’t bring these children back. If the families win, and they probably will, I hope they put the money toward something for the betterment of society as a whole. God knows we need it!!

    • truth hurts

      the only way to prevent these killings is to teach firearms at an early age and at a certain age allow them all to carry. if every child is armed every child is safe.

    • endbullying

      that’s not going to happen. these families already tried suing the united way foundation after their bills and then some were paid for an entire year. because apparently that wasn’t enough. people go through tragedies every day and end up losing everything with no help from anyone. what about a thank you to all those people that donated money and held fundraisers. what a slap in the face. this is about money and money only. shame on them!!!

  • Dave Morrissette

    What a surprise..wait until things die down and then go for money. Greedy families and utterly despicable. I felt sympathy and now I am disgusted by them Shame on you all!

  • Mike

    Well, if this is the case, shouldn’t the American people be able to sue the government for running the country into the ground??? Ugh….this was a tragedy, but these greedy families need to stop. They’re just making an unfortunate situation that much worse.

  • AB207500

    We have become a money hungry nation. The Chardon schools as well as everyone in the community have rallied around these families and this is just a slap in the face. It is a sad day for Chardon schools and its students on an already difficult day. Shame on them

  • Lou Ann

    If TJ was a known threat to other people then the kids at school have the right to be protected from him. No the money won’t bring the deceased kids back but what about Nick? He is paralysed for life. I would think he should get something, he is going to have a rough life and can’t go out and easily earn a living like most people. really hard to imagine.

  • claudethedog

    Do any of you know the families involved? Do you know how United Way kept 90% or more of the money donated? And that the families basically had to beg for everything β€” and it wasn’t much β€” they received? Do you know what “the community” itself received far more support than the families?

    I personally knew one of the victims, and he was NOT a bully. Labeling these kids is just a way of trying to make sense of a tragedy. All the irrational and hateful remarks posted above were made on the SAME DAY one of the fathers died from stress and heartbreak.

    You try living with the grief and loss of a murdered child, and then come back and comment. Until then, you have no business judging anyone.

  • Linda. Puma

    What is the matter with you people who speak of the families who lost their child as money grubbers. I have no doubt that they would give up every thing that they owned if it meant their child would be back. I just read the article about one of the boy’s father was found dead. Can you imagine what that family is going through? Thank your lucky stars that you did not endure what those families did.

  • Wtf

    Oh, and suing the schools is a great way of getting them more security… Let’s take money from an already under-financed part of this amazing country to show them that they didn’t have enough 2 years ago for better security. Because security guards are ao clever that they could have prevented this from happening in the first place. And other stricter security measures could have prevented this tragedy. That’s why there’s never any acts of violence in other high security areas.

  • SoSueMe

    I guess that makes it okay that the squirrelly little POS killed those kids in cold blood… because the wuss was bullied. You’re all heart, and you’re also a ragging idiot.

  • Sam Duncan (@SamDuncan2)

    What is suing the school going to do to get their kids back? There is no doubt they are hurting, we all would be. No doubt some lawyer contacted them and said I can get you money. Who would have thought this would have happen? If the schools did measures would be in place… if suing the school makes them feel better and eases the pain so be it. And as someone stated they wait two years. Money would not be enough to take my pain away!!!!!!

Comments are closed.