The law firm of Stark & Stark announced that a judge has overruled CATCH, Inc.’s motion to dismiss punitive damages against them for failing to protect pre-school children from abuse by their bus driver and aides during fall 2018.
A Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge ruled this week that families will be able to seek punitive damages against CATCH, and other companies, for child abuse suffered when the children were duct taped by the driver and aides while riding to a Philadelphia pre-school. The incidents, which were caught on videotape, occurred for more than one month.
The driver, Jerome Price, was employed by Employer Solutions Staffing Group and was referred to CATCH by a temp agency, Trinity Staffing. CATCH, in turn, landed a contract to provide van service for Children’s Crisis Treatment Center students though LogistiCare, the nation’s largest manager of non-emergency medical transportation. LogistiCare currently holds the $141 million state contract to provide all Medicaid-eligible transportation in Philadelphia.
Lawyers for the children argued that duct taping and physically abusing at risk pre-school children was outrageous behavior by the Defendants and a jury should be allowed to award punitive damages.
“We are pleased that the court found in favor of the children and their families. Hopefully, the Defendants will finally accept responsibility for what happened to these children. If not, we look forward to letting a jury decide the matter,” said Tyler Tomlinson, Esq., a Shareholder with Stark & Stark, who represents seven of the children.
According to Tomlinson, surveillance video from Price’s van shows other unidentified children and a second video appears to show Price using duct tape to restrain children prior to the November 2018 incident. Tomlinson concluded, “We know there are other children that were abused, and we want to help them.”
Jerome Price is also facing criminal charges for abusing these children and has a criminal hearing scheduled for next month.
About Stark & Stark:
Since 1933, Stark & Stark has developed innovative legal solutions to meet our clients’ needs. More than 100 attorneys, 30 practice areas, and a philosophy of putting the law to work for our clients is the basis from which we build and maintain our practice. Stark & Stark offers a full range of legal services for businesses and individuals. After more than 85 years, our attorneys continue to deliver practical, efficient solutions to clients in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, and throughout the United States. The firm serves clients in Philadelphia and surrounding counties, and can be reached at 267-907-9600. Our attorneys are supported by a staff in excess of 200, all of whom are dedicated to providing the highest level of service to each client. Visit www.stark-stark.com for more information.