Federal Judge Will Not Split Up Suit By 11 Former Military Academy Cadets

Jan 22, 2014

A federal judge has denied a Kansas military academy's request to split up a lawsuit brought by 11 former cadets alleging the school fostered a climate of abuse.

Attorneys for St. John's Military School in Salina had argued that each ex-cadet's claims were unique and that jurors in a single trial could get confused. But on Friday, U.S. District Judge John Lungstrum ruled that all the ex-cadets allege the school failed to protect them from abuse by other students. He says the claims involve common questions of law and fact.

Lungstrum also said he was not persuaded that the risk of prejudice from a single trial is so great that the parties and the court should suffer the "great inconvenience and added expense" of 11 separate trials.

Trial--for all 11 cadets' claims--is set for March.