FORT WORTH (CBS 11 NEWS) – A judge dismissed a lawsuit Tuesday against Lewisville ISD over the suicide of 9-year-old Montana Lance. The ruling came only two days after the sudden death of Lance’s mother, Deborah, who became a vocal opponent of bullying after her son’s death.
Deborah and Jason Lance filed the lawsuit against the district, alleging it had failed to take action when their son was targeted by bullies for his speech impediment. Montana Lance later hanged himself in a school bathroom.
The court, however, found the family did not have the evidence to prove their case that the school had discriminated against Montana for his disability or forced him to be subjected to bullying.
“I’m very sad because my wife fought so hard and she lived and breathed it,” said Jason Lance.
An attorney for the school district, Tom Brandt, said his clients were “relieved” not to be found liable, but by no means happy over the tragic case.
An appeal could draw the fight out longer, though. “It’s just a temporary setback, the fight is still on,” said Lance, vowing to take it to the Supreme Court, if necessary. If he succeeds, the case could prove definitive in deciding how much responsibility a school district bears for students’ bullying.
“If that’s what they do, it could set a significant precedent,” said Brandt.
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