Sexual harassment claim against school system is dismissed.
Cindy Spohn sued the Van Dyke Public Schools, her employer, arguing that it allowed teacher Donald Colpaert to sexually harrass her. Her claim was dismissed and she appealed to the Court of Appeals. The latter court, including arch-conservative Judge Kirsten Kelly, deemed the actual facts of harassment "irrelevant" and did not include them in the appellate opinion.
The Court held that when Spohn and her husband filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy and did not list her harassment claim as an asset of her estate, she waived any right to pursue the claim. On that basis, the Court upheld the grant of summary disposition to the school system and Colpaert. It deemed her failure to list the lawsuit as an asset in bankruptcy constituted a judicial estoppel against pursuing the claim. Spohn's argument that a time overlap caused by delay in the ultimate resolution of her bankruptcy claim was caused by the bankruptcy trustee, that her actions were consistent given her state of knowledge at the time, and that the Defendants were in no way prejudiced by any actions she took in bankruptcy court, were to no avail and her claim was dismissed with prejudice.