The 14-year-old boy who filed a lawsuit alleging he was twice sexually assaulted by a counselor at the Thompson Academy juvenile detention center last year was a willing participant in the encounters, lawyers for the Pembroke Pines center allege.
In court documents, the defendants say that the boy, identified only as D.B., is gay and that he enjoyed performing oral sex on a 23-year-old male counselor.
According to a federal lawsuit filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center, the first assault occurred in a laundry room at Thompson Academy in the spring of 2010.The counselor cornered D.B., grabbed his own crotch, and asked, "Are you going to suck it?"
D.B. said he refused, but the counselor forced himself on him.
Lawyers for the counselor and the academy now argue that D.B. "did not feel abused by [the counselor]."
"In his own words, D.B explained, '[B]ecause I'm gay and I just -- and that was something I did -- I like to do... [g]iving oral sex is something I like to do,'" the lawyers wrote in a recent court filing.
A few months later, D.B. alleged he was attacked by the same counselor in the bathroom at a local dentist's office. This time, the counselor ordered D.B. to get on his knees, then shoved his penis into the teenager's mouth.
The defendants provide an entirely different version of that encounter. In court documents, their lawyers write:
"D.B. claims that [the counselor] entered the bathroom, locked the door, removed his handcuffs, and performed oral sex on D.B. before D.B. reciprocated and performed oral sex on [the counselor]. The encounter lasted at least 10 minutes. D.B. made no effort to resist or call for help. D.B. further states that this was a consensual act, and that he did not mind performing oral sex on [the counselor]."
The counselor, meanwhile, has denied having any sexual contact with the boy. Pembroke Pines police investigated the sexual assault allegations and declared them "unfounded," and no criminal charges were filed in the case. "There is no evidence to show that a sexual battery occurred," the police report said.
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Lawyers for Thompson Academy acknowledge this police report in their court filing, so it's unclear whether they are arguing that the sex acts didn't occur, or that they did occur, and were consensual.
The Southern Poverty Law Center's class action suit, filed on behalf of D.B. and four other former Thompson residents, is scheduled for trial in June.