The mother of a 6-year-old boy who was fatally beaten the day after Christmas in 2019 is suing Los Angeles Unified, alleging the school district negligently hired, retained and supervised her son's accused killer in an after-school program.
Kenya Taylor, the 38-year-old mother of Dayvon Taylor, filed the lawsuit Monday in Los Angeles Superior Court, seeking unspecified damages.
An LAUSD representative issued a statement saying the district "is not at liberty to comment on pending litigation. However, we continue to place the highest priority on student safety in all of our schools and we take allegations of misconduct seriously.
"We have implemented numerous policies and procedures to protect students and to comply with the law with respect to the prevention, investigation and reporting of child abuse," the statement says. "We will remain vigilant in protecting our students from those who would do them harm."
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Tyler D'Shaun Martin Brand, 23, is awaiting trial in Norwalk Superior Court on charges of murder and assault on a child causing death in the Dec. 26 killing, which occurred in Downey and not on district property.
The District Attorney's Office alleges the boy was severely beaten at the defendant's Downey apartment and died the same day at St. Mary Medical Center in Long Beach. Brand was the boy's godfather and had been caring for the tot over the holiday break, according to prosecutors, who said the defendant faces up to 25 years to life behind bars if convicted.
According to the suit, Dayvon attended Normandie Avenue Elementary School's Beyond the Bell program, where Brand was his supervisor and coach. Before the boy's death, Brand isolated Dayvon from other students, teachers and other supervisors so he could be alone with the boy, the suit alleges.
The district should have known of Brand's alleged history of abusive conduct with other children and that he was unfit to be working as an elementary school coach or supervisor, according to the suit.
The boy's mother, a resident of Long Beach, has suffered a "substantial loss of assistance, care, comfort, companionship, society, guidance, moral support, love, affection and protection" since her son's death, the suit says.