A former West Career and Technical Academy student is suing the Clark County School District and his former teacher over the latter’s inappropriate pursuit of a sexual relationship with him, charging that the district could have stopped her but failed to thoroughly investigate the matter.
A complaint filed on Feb. 14 in District Court in Las Vegas by the male student through his attorney, Dale Hayes, details events that led to the arrest of math teacher Renee Rine, who pleaded guilty in August to one count of child abuse, neglect or endangerment, and one count of attempted sexual conduct between certain employees or volunteers of the school and pupils. (The Las Vegas Review-Journal does not typically identify victims of sex crimes and is not publishing the victim’s name in this case.)
The interactions began in 2015, according to the lawsuit, when Rine would inappropriately touch the student’s arms and chest, eventually culminating in a confrontation in the teacher’s classroom where she allegedly confessed to having sexual fantasies about the high school junior.
The lawsuit claims that Rine also referenced this conversation in a subsequent email to the student, and states that CCSD could have put a stop to Rine’s behavior during an early investigation into the teacher’s conduct, had administrators followed up on the student’s report that his email conversations with Rine were exchanged over school accounts.
“An investigation of the emails would have put an end to the entire matter,” the complaint states. “Rather than check Rine’s emails for inappropriate content, (West Career & Technical Academy Dean Jan) Snipes filed a report with CCSD police and the entire matter was swept under the rug.”
The complaint states Rine then directed the student to delete any incriminating emails, but began to send him explicit texts and photos from a Snapchat account throughout 2017. Though the student attempted to cut contact on multiple occasions, the complaint says, Rine continued to communicate with him, eventually demanding that he meet her in a hotel room in early 2018.
The lawsuit states the plaintiff has suffered anxiety and depression as a result of Rine’s conduct over three years, as well as ostracization and embarrassment because other students at the school knew what was happening.
The plaintiff is asking for damages against Rine and the district.
Hayes, the plaintiff’s attorney, did not return a request for comment. Lawyers who represented Rine during her criminal case did not return requests for comment. Rine’s prison sentence was suspended and she was sentenced to probation for up to five years.
CCSD representatives said the district does not comment on pending litigation.