Thursday, August 25, 2016
Victim of Jasper High School aide's sexual assault, sues woman and her husband
In the lawsuit, which was filed July 22 in Jasper County Circuit Court, Joplin attorney Scott Vorhees, representing the young man, who is referred to only as D. S. in the petition, Janice Rusk, 46, is described as a "manipulative" woman who lured the boy into a series of sexual encounters.
Under the guise of being a mentor, the lawsuit says, "(Rusk) deceived D. J.'s mother into believing that she would educate and care for her child while he was in school and after school activities.
"For a period of time, (Rusk) repeatedly sought opportunities to sexually molest D. S. by bribery, employing manipulative tactics, false professions of affection, forced vows of secrecy and silence, and other such methods to coerce the minor child into keeping her actions silent, despite the enormous harm she was inflicting on the child physically, emotionally ,and mentally."
The lawsuit says Rusk sexually assaulted, battered, and sodomized D. S. in various Jasper County locations, including on the tailgate of D. S.' pickup.
"D. S. did not have the physical or mental wherewithal to consent to our escape from her advances."
The petition also accuses Rusk's husband, Dan, of "general negligence," claiming he "knew or should have known that his wife was using marital funds to bribe children."
Rusk also had ample evidence of what his wife was doing, the petition says.
"Multiple warning signs of inappropriate behavior by (Janice Rusk) were evident both before and after November 2013, but Dan Rusk turned a blind eye to said signs, choosing instead to enable his wife's sexually inappropriate perversities by permitting her to be alone with D. S. in her private vehicle. (He) did so despite on one or more occasions witnessing inappropriate conduct between (his wife) and minor boys and in a manner that should have caused him to rescue the children and to report his wife' to the children's parents and/or law enforcement."
The lawsuit also claims that Rusk's husband:
-Did not warn D. S.'s mother of (her) pedophilia
-Chose to ignore warning signs that (she) was not controlling her perversity and pedophilia
-Chose to be inattentive to the safety and well being of children when they were supposed to be in her care
-Chose to enable his wife's perversities rather than insisting that she receive mental health counseling and that she stay away from children, including D. S.
The petition asks for unspecified actual, compensatory, and punitive damages and asks for a jury trial.
The lawsuit was served on Janice Rusk at her present home, the women's prison in Vandalia. She was sentenced to seven years in prison on statutory rape and statutory sodomy charges, but was eligible for release after 120 days after going through a sex offender treatment program.
At the end of the 120-day period, Judge David Dally denied the early release.