Families of students a teacher took inappropriate pictures of in San Jose have filed a lawsuit against the educator and the South Bay school district he was previously employed at.
The families filed one lawsuit on Thursday. While their girls are now in high school, their attorney said they are still haunted by what happened at Willow Glen Middle School. Students said the San Jose Unified School District should have known one of its teachers was a predator.
The district fired physical education teacher and coach Clifford Pappadakis in 2017 after he was charged with secretly taking sexual pictures of girls at school and keeping them on his district-issued laptop. The coach was ultimately found guilty, but the attorney for the families said the school could have kept it from ever happening.
"This is one of those situations where there were a lot of red flags that could have been spotted and this could have been prevented," attorney Mark Boskovich said. "But instead it just kept going on."
Boskovich also said the girls' families don't think Pappadakis was punished severely enough. He was sentenced to three years probation and home confinement. The families want prison time.
"It's been a really devastating experience for both the families," Boskovich said. "It's just not the girls, it's the parents, the siblings, everyone around them."