Northwest Allen County Schools responds to allegations in COVID-19 lawsuit

Northwest Allen County Schools (NACS)
Northwest Allen County Schools (NACS)(WPTA)
Updated: Apr. 12, 2022 at 6:50 PM EDT
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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WPTA) - Attorneys representing the Northwest Allen County Schools system have provided a point-by-point response to allegations laid out in a lawsuit that targets policies related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The filing in Allen Superior Court on Tuesday includes nearly 300 lines of answers -- many simply acknowledging undisputed facts, others denying some of the assertions at the center of the claim.

The lawsuit itself had already been pared down. ABC21 reported in March that a judge dismissed parts of the claim, but allowed other elements to stand and declined to toss the lawsuit entirely. The remaining elements include issues related to quarantine policies and contact tracing. Gov. Eric Holcomb was removed in March as a defendant.

The lawsuit was brought by Chris and Natalie Forbing, Michael Bell, Jacquelyn and Eric Christman and Andrew Frisinger on behalf of their children. In addition to the governor and the school system, it named the Indiana Department of Health and its commissioner, Dr. Kristina Box, the Allen County Health Department and Commissioner Dr. Matthew Sutter and other individuals, including Superintendent Chris Himsel and members of the NACS Board of Trustees.

Himsel is on medical leave and recently informed the Board that he would be leaving his position at the end of June. The Allen County Health Department filed its own answer to the allegations last week.

NACS concludes its response with a series of assertions that “the School Defendants deny violating the law in any way, and deny Plaintiffs are entitled to any requested relief.” A hearing is scheduled for July 20.

The entire response follows.

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