The Latest: Lawyer: School suicide ruling will save lives
BOSTON (AP) — The Latest on the Massachusetts state supreme court ruling in the case against a university for a student’s suicide (all times local):
The attorney for the family of a Massachusetts Institute of Technology student who killed himself on campus says a decision from the state’s highest court will “save student lives.”
Attorney Jeffrey Beeler said in a statement that they are disappointed the court found MIT cannot be held responsible for Han Nguyen’s death. But he praised the court for finding that schools can be liable for student suicides in some circumstances.
Nguyen’s family said the school knew he was a suicide risk and could have prevented his death.
But the court said schools can only be held liable in certain circumstances, like when they fail to act after a student threatens to kill themselves.
An MIT spokeswoman said Nguyen’s death was a tragedy and students’ well-being is of “paramount importance to the school.”
Massachusetts’ highest court has ruled that the Massachusetts Institute of Technology cannot be held responsible for the death of a graduate student who killed himself in 2009.
The Supreme Judicial Court sided with MIT on Monday in the closely-watched case that examined whether colleges and universities have a duty to protect students from harming themselves.
The family of 25-year-old Han Nguyen said in their lawsuit that the school knew Nguyen was a suicide risk and could have prevented his death.
But the high court said in its ruling that a school can only be held responsible when it either knows that a student has attempted suicide while enrolled or shortly before entering school or that the student had said he or she plans to kill themselves.