Snohomish High School is pictured Friday, July 29, 2022, in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Snohomish High School is pictured Friday, July 29, 2022, in Snohomish, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)

Lawsuit: Snohomish High School was negligent in rape of girl in ’80s

A teacher locked a boy and a girl in a room together without supervision. The boy sexually assaulted the girl, a lawsuit alleges.

SNOHOMISH — A woman was at a high school friend’s house when she heard a man’s voice on the phone.

She immediately recognized it. That man on the phone had sexually assaulted her at Snohomish High School in the 1980s, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday in Snohomish County Superior Court.

The moment the woman heard his voice, “It all came flooding back,” her attorney, Kirk Davis, told The Daily Herald.

Around 1980 or 1981, a Snohomish High School teacher, Mark Albertine, would punish students by locking them in a room unsupervised, according to the lawsuit. At the time, the woman was a 15-year-old student there.

She made a sarcastic comment in class, so Albertine locked her in a conference room, the complaint alleges. When she got there, a teen boy was already there. Albertine, who retired in 2017 after decades as the girls basketball coach and in various leadership roles, locked the door and left.

The boy sexually assaulted her, according to the lawsuit. She couldn’t get out of the room or call for help.

The assault wasn’t reported to police, Davis said. In fact, she didn’t tell anyone for years.

“It had a tremendous impact upon her at the time,” he said. “She certainly became a different girl.”

The lawsuit argues Snohomish School District and the high school acted negligently in allowing Albertine’s form of punishment to be levied. Since the litigation is pending, the district declined to comment. Reached by phone last week, Albertine also declined to comment.

Last year, the two old high school friends discussed what happened, Davis said. The woman’s friend said the man should apologize for what he did. They called him together and put it on speakerphone, the lawyer said. The woman, identified in the lawsuit only by her initials, said she wanted to talk about what happened at the school.

“He knew immediately what she was talking about,” Davis said.

The man apologized.

This is the only way the woman can get justice, Davis said. The statute of limitations has passed for criminal charges. While state lawmakers have extended or, in some cases, eliminated the statute of limitations for sexual assault, it doesn’t apply to this case where the deadline had already passed.

“There needs to be a recognition of what happened here,” he said.

The woman, now in her 50s and living in Pierce County, has been in therapy to figure out how the abuse has impacted her decades later, her lawyer said.

A previous version of this article misstated the woman’s current age.

Jake Goldstein-Street: 425-339-3439;; Twitter: @GoldsteinStreet.

Talk to us

More in Local News

The sign at Swedish Edmonds. (Herald file)
New deal gives Swedish nurses, health care workers a big boost in pay

The health care provider and SEIU 1199NW agreed to raises totaling at least 21.5% in the next three years

Ahadi family arriving in Washington on Oct. 22, 2021. (photo courtesy of Lutheran Community Services Northwest)
A year later, Afghan refugees in Lynnwood see brighter future ahead

Ziaurahman Ahadi served as a trauma medic on battlefields in Afghanistan. Now he builds fireplaces to support a family of eight.

4th defendant pleads guilty in white supremacist attack

Jason Stanley, of Boise, Idaho is one of four men prosecuted for attacking a Black DJ in Lynnwood.

A business on Highway 99 sustained heavy damage in a fire Wednesday morning north of Lynnwood. (South County Fire)
Arson damages building on Highway 99 north of Lynnwood

The fire in the 15800 block caused the highway to close between 156th and 164th streets SW on Wednesday morning.

Logo for news use featuring Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Snohomish man suffers life-threatening injuries in police shootout

The Valley Independent Investigative Team reported state troopers returned fire when a driver shot at them near Clearview.

An EA-18G Growler taxis down the airstrip on Naval Air Station Whidbey Island during the squadron’s welcome home ceremony in August 2017. (Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Scott Wood/U.S. Navy)
Talks break down over ‘remedy’ in Whidbey Island Growler lawsuit

“From the get-go, everyone recognized that it was probably going to end up in the court’s hands.”

Logo for news use featuring Camano Island in Island County, Washington. 220118
Island County settles sexual harassment lawsuit with deputy

The county will pay Deputy Mike Adrian a total of $105,000.

Snohomish County Sheriff Adam Fortney in a video decries an erosion of public safety and increase in brazen criminal behavior. (Screenshot)
Snohomish County sheriff, chorus of local leaders decry policing reforms

Criminals are getting more brazen, they said. In a video, they called for easing vehicle pursuit rules and stiffening drug laws.

Attorney Michael Andrews, left, and Kyle Brown listen to the judge's address Wednesday afternoon at the Snohomish County Superior Courthouse in Everett, Washington on September 21, 2022. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Marysville ex-youth minister gets community service for sexual assault

Kyle Brown, of Marysville, pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault with a sexual motivation last month. In 2019, he was charged with molestation.

Most Read