The parents of a student killed in a 2019 school shooting in Highlands Ranch have refused to accept a $387,000 payout from the school as they push to make more information about the attack public.

Maria and John Castillo, parents of slain 18-year-old Kendrick Castillo, have not accepted the settlement money in a civil lawsuit they brought against STEM School Highlands Ranch, their attorney, Dan Caplis, said Monday.

The parents hope refusing the funds will help them in a fight with the school over releasing more information about the May 7, 2019, school shooting.

Kendrick Castillo was hailed as a hero after he rushed at a shooter who had burst into his classroom that day. He was killed and eight others were injured. The two shooters who attacked the school were later convicted and sentenced to life in prison.

Douglas County District Court Judge Jeffrey Holmes in February ordered STEM to pay the Castillos the maximum amount of monetary damages allowed under state law, in particular the Claire Davis School Safety Act. After the damages were paid, the lawsuit against the school would be dismissed as moot because the maximum damages were awarded, Holmes ruled.

But the Castillos don’t want the lawsuit to be dismissed, court filings show. The parents want the information they learned during the discovery process to be made public. They also want to bring the case to a jury, which could find the school failed to protect their son. (The school’s settlement payment on its own is not an admission of liability.)

“John and Maria Castillo have succeeded in using the Claire Davis School Safety Act to find the truth about what led up to the mass shooting at STEM that their son Kendrick sacrificed his life to stop,” Caplis said in a statement. “Now the Castillos want to share that evidence with the public so that all schools can learn the lessons from the STEM shooting and be safer moving forward.”

STEM is fighting the release of some material, court records show. The school’s director of communications, Nicole Bostel, said the school doesn’t want to see the information released because of concerns about student privacy and school safety.

“We’ve never wanted to fight the Castillos in any form or fashion,” she said. “What we want to do right now is just protect student privacy. There is a lot more information in the documentation they have about other students that they got …read more

Source:: The Denver Post – News


Kendrick Castillo’s parents refuse settlement money in push to make STEM School shooting records public

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