Chicago – October 15th, 2015 – New information has come to light supporting claims that United Airlines and the Chicago Board of Education (CBE), could have prevented the sexual abuse of children during a mentoring program in Chicago during the 1990s.
Attorney Lyndsay Markley says her new lawsuit filed against the CBE today that Mattie Tyson, principal of James Weldon Johnson Elementary School when the mentoring program began in 1995, recommended perpetrator Marvin Lovett for the position of Project Coordinator for a college scholarship program called the ‘United Airlines Believers Program’, despite receiving warnings that Lovett was terminated from a different Chicago Public School due to sexually inappropriate conduct towards young boys.
[sws_pullquote_right]See a copy of the complaint in John Doe #19 V. United Continental Holdings, Inc. [/sws_pullquote_right]
The case against the CBE is based on new information disclosed as the result of a ruling a few weeks ago requiring the CBE to turn over documents related to its own internal investigation of Lovett's death and provided by a former CPS social worker at the school during the program, who recently came forward to say that he overheard young boys discussing the abuse, but that he took no action to report it to anyone. Based on this information, the counts against CBE allege that it knew that Lovett was not fit to work with children but recommended him for a job as the United Airlines Project Coordinator anyway.
The lawsuits arise out of the claims of 19 young men that they were sexually abused by Marvin Lovett during their participation in the United Airlines Believers Program from approximately 1995 until 2000. One of the participants, Sylvester Jamison, shot Lovett to death in his apartment in 2000. Jamison, then aged 17, told police that Lovett had sexually abused him for years. During the police investigation, over 100 tapes were found in Lovett's apartment showing him engaging in the sexual abuse and exploitation of underage boys, many of whom were in the Believers program.
In addition to the new claims against the CBE, Attorney Lyndsay A. Markley will be filing counts of willful and wanton conduct against all current defendants, including United Airlines. To date, United Airlines has disputed its role in the program claiming it was merely a financial sponsor; a claim that isn't likely to hold water given the nearly 20 hours of video footage shot of the Believers Program as a documentary by United Airlines featuring their employees engaged in a number of activities with the program, including performing training and depicting them working closing with Tyson and Lovett.