Crime

Kansas City student was raped when her school let a felon pick her up, lawsuit says

Lincoln Middle School
Lincoln Middle School jtoyoshiba@kcstar.com

A violent convicted felon was allowed to pick up a 14-year-old Lincoln College Preparatory Academy student from school without authorization, then took the girl to a motel and raped her, a lawsuit filed this week alleges.

The 2010 incident caused the student “tremendous pain and suffering” that continues to this day, says the lawsuit, filed in Jackson County Circuit Court.

“It shocks the conscience,” said Gerald McGonagle, one of the attorneys representing the family. “You send your kids to school, you expect your kids to be safe, and the school allows a predator to come on the premises and walk out with your kid.

“It’s a parent’s worst nightmare.”

The plaintiff, now 21, is filing the lawsuit as Jane Doe L.A. Named as defendants are Kansas City Public Schools, former Lincoln Middle School principal Dennis Walker and school attendance secretary Jackie Green. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.

The school district responded in an emailed statement: “Kansas City Public Schools does not comment on pending or active litigation.”

Green did not respond to a call or email seeking comment. Walker retired from the school district last year.

Lincoln College Preparatory Academy is the Kansas City Public Schools’ premier, academically selective school serving grades 6 through 12. Lincoln’s middle school grades were in a separate building until 2010 when the district consolidated them into the high school building as part of a district-wide downsizing of schools. But last fall, school officials decided to reopen the middle school building for the 2019-2020 school year to relieve overcrowding at the nearby high school.

Roy-Andrews
Roy Andrews

According to the lawsuit, the girl was in class in early May 2010 when the man, whom the lawsuit names as Roy Andrews, arrived to pick her up. Andrews was known tangentially to the family, the plaintiff’s attorneys said, and because her parents were aware of his past they would have never allowed him to pick up their daughter.

The school district’s policies and procedures required that students be released only to authorized persons, the lawsuit says, and parents had to complete a form listing all persons who were allowed to pick up their children. The girl’s mother had filled out the form at the beginning of that school year, the lawsuit says.

Even though Andrews was not on the approved list, the lawsuit alleges, Green allowed him to take the girl off school premises — a direct violation of school policy.

At no point, the lawsuit says, did Green attempt to obtain verbal or written consent from the plaintiff’s mother to release her daughter into Andrews’ custody — an action also required by school policy.

After leaving the school grounds, the lawsuit says, Andrews drove the girl to a motel in Independence and raped her.

The complaint accuses the school district employees of negligence and breach of ministerial duties, saying they failed to properly supervise and protect the student. It also says the school district is liable because the girl was under the care of the district and its employees.

Court records show that Andrews, now 51, had prior felony convictions at the time he allegedly took the girl from school. He pleaded guilty to second-degree murder after shooting a man in 1990. While in prison for that crime, Andrews was convicted of possessing a controlled substance in a correctional institution and committing violence on a correctional employee. He was released from prison in 2006, then accused in 2007 in the shooting of a man in east Kansas City. Records show he pleaded guilty to felony assault in that case and was sentenced to 819 days in jail.

And in 2012, Andrews was linked by DNA evidence to the rape and sodomy of a Kansas City woman and her 11-year-old daughter in a 1990 cold case. Andrews pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 18 years in that case.

“It’s mind-boggling,” said Rebecca Randles, who also represents the plaintiff. “This is why we have those safety mechanisms in place. He went to the school and said her mom told him to come pick her up, and they let her go.”

The student left with Andrews, Randles said, because “she was a good little girl.”

“She was obedient, kind, a good student, studious, hard-working,” Randles said. “The kind that if an adult in authority said, ‘You’re to go with him,’ she’d say, ‘OK.’  

Randles and McGonagle said the girl’s parents knew something was wrong when she returned home that day in 2010.

“They took her to Children’s Mercy, where she had an exam done,” McGonagle said. “He gave her a venereal disease as well.”

The parents immediately filed a police report, the attorneys said. Police investigated, they said, as did the Children’s Division of the Missouri Department of Social Services, and the case was turned over to the prosecutor’s office.

“It was the parents’ understanding that the prosecutor used this case as leverage in other cases to find him guilty,” McGonagle said.

A 2012 story in The Star reported that at the time Andrews was charged in the rape case that year, he already was in custody facing trial on multiple counts of statutory sodomy and rape stemming from charges filed in 2010 alleging that Andrews had sexually abused two girls. The 2010 case, however, can no longer be found in the digital court database.

Michael Mansur, spokesman for Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker, said he could not comment on the issue.

The girl was devastated by the attack, Randles said.

“It took a bright, happy, very intelligent, well educated, articulate little girl and turned her into a shell of herself,” she said. “She was shattered by the experience.”

That’s why it took several years for her to file the lawsuit, McGonagle said. Now, he said, she hopes that something positive will come out of her nightmare.

“She wants to make sure this never happens to anybody again,” he said.

Judy L. Thomas: 816-234-4334, @judylthomas

  Comments