The parents of a teenage boy are suing after a group of high school girls from their son's school admitted to conspiring and making false sexual assault allegations against the young man because they "just don't like him."
What are the details?
Michael Flood Jr. and Alecia Flood filed the suit Oct. 1 in the U.S. District Court for Western Pennsylvania, against the parents of five girls — dubbed "Mean Girls" in the documents — who they say terrorized their son with fabricated rape allegations and later admitted to the falsehoods.
"Mean Girls" is apparently in reference to the 2004 comedy that focuses on a female high school clique that manipulates and bullies other students.
In the first false allegation described in the lawsuit, the boy — named as T.F. in court documents because he is a minor — was accused of sexually assaulting one of the girls in July 2017 at a swimming pool where he worked as a lifeguard.
It was later discovered that one of the girls, Megan Villegas, had told others before the incident that she was going to get T.F. fired and cooked up the story with his first accuser, falsely saying she had witnessed the alleged assault. The rest of the girls are only referenced by their initials in the court filing, because they are minors.
T.F. was charged for the alleged crime and fired from his job.
Then, in October 2017, the first accuser told other students that "she would do anything to get T.F. expelled from school," according to the lawsuit. During a recorded interview with a forensic investigator, the girl made inconsistent statements about the details surrounding the alleged assault against her, then exclaimed, "I just don't like to hear him [T.F.] talk. I don't like to look at him. I just don't like him."
In March 2018, T.F. was lured by another girl via Snapchat to "hang out with her and her friends" at the girl's home. The girl was allegedly drunk when T.F. arrived to meet the group, and according to the lawsuit, he left after a short visit. The Floods' house was egged later that night by three of the Mean Girls, the lawsuit states.
A few days later, the first accuser was overheard coaching the second accuser on making a false sexual assault allegation against T.F. The two girls walked together to the school counselor's office, where the second girl told school officials that T.F. had broken into her home and assaulted her on the night he came over.
The two accusers stuck to their stories for months, with help from their friends who claimed to have witnessed the attacks. By the end of the summer, however, the scheme unraveled as several students came forward with confessions and Snapchat messages confirming the girls were lying.
The lawsuit details how T.F. "was forced to endure multiple court appearances, detention in a juvenile facility, detention at home, the loss of his liberty and other damages until several of the girls reluctantly admitted that their accusations were false."
T.F. was also harassed at school by other students and bullied because of the false claims against him. In one instance, a fellow student slapped a strip of masking tape across his back that read, "PREDATOR."
The Floods are also suing the Seneca Valley School District, Butler County District Attorney's Office, and Butler County over their son's treatment.
Attorney Craig Fishman, who represents the Floods, said T.F. was further damaged by "gender bias" exhibited by school officials and the D.A.
"(T.F.) was basically being tortured in school by the other students and investigators, but the administration was only focused on protecting the girls who were lying," Fishman told PennLive. "Once the allegations were proven false, they really didn't care one bit about T.F. and there has been absolutely no repercussions against the girls."
All charges against T.F. were dropped after the district attorney's office was provided with evidence that the allegations of sexual assault were false, but the office has yet to expunge his record, as promised.
T.F. is now homeschooled.