NAACP sues Kent schools, alleges excessive force on 15 black students

A lawsuit filed Friday on behalf of 15 students and their parents claims that Kent School District security officers used excessive force against students, including handcuffing, squeezing ``pressure points'' or joints, or unnecessarily kneeing children. The action filed in King County Superior Court by attorneys representing the Seattle-King County Chapter of the NAACP follows an earlier claim for nearly $50 million in damages. The action also claims the students, all black, received more harsh discipline or were treated differently because they are African American. The rejection of that earlier claim by insurance carriers for the school district allows the children and parents to pursue their claims in court. Pursuant to state law, the lawsuit filed Friday doesn't list any dollar figures, but says damages will be shown at the time of trial. And attorneys anticipate filing additional claims on behalf of more students. The earlier claims filed against the school district, and rejected by insurance carriers, sought $3.3 million in damages for each of the 15 students, or a total of $49.5 million. [more]