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Ottawa Hills School District Sued by Victims Claiming School Repeatedly Failed to Protect Them from Sexual Assaults and Rape

Welcome sign that reads "Ottawa Hills Jr./Sr. High School" with a mugshot of Ronald Stevens overlaid on the bottom left corner of the image

Former Ottawa Hills Schools employee, Ronald “Donnie” Stevens, was found guilty of 31 charges including nine counts of rape and six counts of sexual battery, all involving young male students. This past October, he was sentenced to 101 years in prison.

Stevens worked as an Operations Manager, overseeing the custodial staff at Ottawa Hills. He also served as a youth baseball coach for various recreational and travel leagues.  Steven’s wife, Kristie Stevens was a teacher for Ottawa Hills. A civil suit has been filed against Stevens, his wife, and the Ottawa Hills School District by three of the minor victims.

About the Lawsuit

The suit alleges that Stevens sexually abused, even raped, these minor children on school property, during school hours. Specifically, it is alleged Stevens engaged in heinous conduct with these children that included:

  • Sending and soliciting sexual photographs and videos with them over Snapchat,
  • Providing children with birth control,
  • Offering and shaving a certain minor’s pubic hair,
  • Using sex toys on the students in school, and
  • Inviting boys over for a sleepover where he would give them alcohol, massage them, and molest and rape them.

As early as 2017, the School District was made aware that Stevens was engaging in certain inappropriate conduct with students for which the school suggested he stop using Snapchat and use “better judgment” about maintaining certain boundaries.

Stevens was dismissive and continued in his conduct. In support of his conduct, his wife would release the children from her class into her husband’s care.   Parents continued to complain to the school, demanding that neither Stevens or his wife be permitted to have further contact with their children.  While the District assured the parents they would follow through, they took no apparent action and later responded that the District simply had “too much on its plate to deal with this.”  Meanwhile, Stevens engaged in rampant abuse. From 2017 through 2019, it is alleged that Stevens sexually abused and/or raped one of the minor male students nearly every other day – often at school, during school hours.  The student subsequently attempted suicide.

In addition to sexual battery claims, the lawsuit sets forth several other causes of action, including allegations that the District violated Title IX – a federal civil rights law that mandates a school investigate any complaint of sexual harassment or sexual violence against a student and taken immediate action to eliminate the conduct.  Here, the District seemingly disregarded its obligations and failed to take any steps or exercise any care in preventing Stevens from engaging in inappropriate relationships with students.

Consult an Attorney Today

Our law firm investigates sexual assault cases and represents victims.  If you or your child has been the victim of sexual abuse or misconduct by a teacher or coach, we know it can be very hard to come forward and talk about it.  But we encourage you to reach out and contact our office for a free confidential consultation with our dedicated and compassionate sexual assault lawyers to see how we can help you.

Charles E. Boyk Law Offices, LLC

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