MyNewsLA.com [Los Angeles CA]
July 11, 2021
A private Catholic high school in Burbank is being sued by a former student who alleges she was sexually molested as a minor in 2019 by a track-and-field coach who warned her not to tell anyone what he had done to her.
The plaintiff is identified only as Jane Doe in the Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit brought against Providence High School and the now-18-year-old plaintiff’s former coach, Mohamed Haddada, who is 27 and awaiting trial on charges of sexual abuse, according to her court papers.
The suit’s allegations include sexual abuse of a minor, sexual harassment, intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent hiring, supervision and retention. Doe seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
A Providence High School representative could not be immediately reached.
At the outset of the 2018-19 school year, Doe was 16 years old and in the 10th grade, the suit states. He was assigned as her track and field coach and soon began manipulating her emotions to take advantage of her age in order to ultimately sexually abuse her, the suit states.
Haddada had adult-oriented talks with Doe, paid special attention to her and shared personal information about his personal life, the suit states.
The Providence High track-and-field program continued into the summer of 2019 and the team practiced regularly under Haddada’s supervision, the suit states. Haddada contacted several students to attend a school-sponsored track competition at a Las Vegas school in late June 2019, including Doe, even though she had not qualified to participate in any of the track and field events, according to the suit.
Haddada was the only adult chaperone attending the track competition with Doe and two other students, and he had them stay at the same motel where he was lodged, the suit states. He checked the plaintiff and a female friend of hers into their room, but when Doe became ill later from possible food poisoning, he asked her to stay in his room so she could sleep well prior to the next day’s competition the suit states.
As Doe attempted to go to sleep, Haddada began inappropriately touching her and eventually had involuntary sex with her, the suit states.
“Plaintiff left the room and returned to her hotel room, where she cried through the entire night,” the suit states.
Doe told her friend what happened and the incident left the plaintiff with bruises on her thighs, the suit states. She asked her friend not to tell anyone what had happened to her, according to the suit.
That same month and on previous occasions, Providence administrators told Haddada and others that they believed he acted inappropriately with minor female students, but “did nothing further to investigate Haddada’s inappropriate conduct, did not supervise Haddada more closely (and) did not restrict or limit Haddada’s ability to be alone with minor students,” the suit states
Had the administration done something after the earlier allegations against Haddada, Doe “would never have been abused,” the suit states.
Doe confronted Haddada a few weeks after the alleged incident in Las Vegas and he admitted he sexually abused her while also telling her he was molested as a child, according to the lawsuit that was filed Wednesday.
Haddada made “express and implied threats” to Doe not to tell anyone what had happened between them, the suit states. However, Doe confided in 2019 to her mother, who told police, and they arrested Haddada.