Judge refuses to split abuse suit

St. John's Military School
St. John's Military School (KSN File Photo)

WICHITA, Kansas (AP) — A federal judge has denied a Kansas military academy’s request to split up a lawsuit brought by 11 former cadets alleging the school fostered a climate of abuse.

Attorneys for St. John’s Military School in Salina contended each ex-cadet’s claims were unique and that jurors in a single trial could get confused.

But U.S. District Judge John Lungstrum ruled Friday that all the ex-cadets allege the school failed to protect them from abuse by other students. He says the claims involve common questions of law and fact.

Lungstrum also said he was not persuaded that the risk of prejudice from a single trial is so great that the parties and the court should suffer the “great inconvenience and added expense” of 11 separate trials.

Trial is set for March.

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