Victim Testifies In Bullying Trial

By Jeff Neumeyer

FORT WAYNE, Ind. ( — A Fort Wayne father testified Tuesday in a civil trial that he felt let down by a Catholic school where he claims his son was repeatedly bullied, saying officials didn’t do enough to stop it.

But there are two sides to this story, leaving an Allen County jury with the chore of deciding which one to believe.

Leonardo Strahm took the stand Tuesday, and testified that back in 2008 and 2009 a number of classmates of the boy at Precious Blood Catholic School called him names, and pushed, punched, and generally bullied him.

He made numerous complaints to school administrators and a priest, but says that his calls for help fell on deaf ears.

He said it caused him to have stomach problems, and that he needed counseling from a psychologist to deal with it.

Lawyers for the school are trying to undermine the boy’s testimony.

It came out in questioning that there was no real paper trail of complaints, that the victim never turned in written forms available to students, to officially report the problems.

Also part of the evidence, though the child, who suffers from Cerebral Palsy, claims he was routinely pushed down a flight of stairs at the school, no other witnesses have come forward to substantiate his story.

The trial is scheduled to continue through Friday.