Lawsuit off to a slow start
What's happening with the lawsuit filed against the city school system by former Maritime Industries Academy Principal Marco Clark? I hadn't heard much about the suit since it was filed in March, so I decided to check on it. Turns out, there's a reason for the holdup: Clark's lawyer sued the wrong people. The court papers named the mayor, City Council and city solicitor, even though the school system hasn't been a city agency since 1997. Those parties had to be dismissed as defendants, and the body that has governed the system for the past 11 years -- the school board -- had to be added.
In addition, there are complications involving the defendants in the case being properly served. A representative for Clark's attorney went to North Avenue to serve the nine individual school system administrators named as defendants in the suit. Four of them, including Dr. Alonso, were served personally, but five were not in the office at the time and the papers were left with a secretary. There was much ado about whether it was kosher to serve the secretary rather than the defendants themselves; in asking for the suit to be dismissed, the school system argued it wasn't. At a hearing last week, it was determined that the five people must be re-served.
It's also up for debate whether the mother named in the suit, Tonja Evans, was ever served; she said recently she had not been served, though the process server for Clark's attorney said she was served in March.
A refersher on Clark's situation, see earlier coverage here.