Former Carrollton Jr. High Teacher Being Sued in Sangamon Co. Over Sex Abuse Allegations

By Benjamin Cox on January 8, 2022 at 12:51pm

A former Carrollton Grade School Social Studies teacher facing two charges of violating a no-stalking order of protection in Greene County is now being sued in Sangamon County Circuit Court.

An unnamed female, known as Jane Doe in court filings, is being represented by Belleville attorneys Jarrod Beasley and Matthew Young in a lawsuit filed in Sangamon County on December 29th against the Riverton Community Unit School District #14 Board of Education, retired Riverton High School Principal Bill Lamkey, Riverton High School Guidance Counselor Tamara Sturdy, and former Riverton High School teacher and head coach Kyle A. Price.

The lawsuit alleges that the now-36 year old Jane Doe, who was a student at Riverton High School between 1999-2004, began receiving alleged illicit sexual grooming and sexual abuse from Price starting as a 15 year old sophomore and continuing until she graduated. During that time, Price was employed as a social studies teacher and girls’ head basketball coach at Riverton High School.

The lawsuit details allegations that Price invited the victim to his home under several different false pretenses in order to groom her and have sex with her while they were alone. It further alleges that the victim and Price had sex on class trips and on school grounds for the duration of the victim’s time as a Riverton High School student.

The lawsuit also accuses and alleges that Price used his authority as the victim’s coach and teacher to isolate the victim from other teachers and students in order to both shame the victim and to keep the alleged illegal conduct secret. The details say that Price “harrassed” the victim in front of both teachers and students to keep the conduct hidden and to “denigrate and humiliate” the victim to “prevent her from discussing” the conduct with her friends and family.

According to the lawsuit, members of the Riverton School Board became aware of Price’s abuse towards the victim and after speaking with the victim “suggested…she was to blame for Price’s sexual misconduct, that it was a misunderstanding and/or admonished Doe to remain quiet about their relationship lest she would cause Price to lose his job.” The lawsuit also accuses Riverton High School Guidance Counselor Tamara Sturdy of not promptly reporting the misconduct to the Illinois Department of Child & Family Services in 2001 after learning of Price’s alleged first sexual assault of the victim. The lawsuit says that Sturdy in turn only reported the incident to Riverton High School Principal Bill Lamkey and that after a meeting between Lamkey, Sturdy, Price, and the victim’s parents no investigation or further report was filed with DCFS only that “Lamkey was made aware of Doe being uncomfortable around Price and the things he was doing to groom her.”

The lawsuit further details an incident in which the victim attempted to come forward again. This time, according to the suit, the victim wrote a letter detailing the alleged abuse and grooming to a Riverton Middle School teacher who also served as an Assistant High School Girls’ Basketball Coach. The teacher allegedly reported the letter to Fred Lamkey, Riverton Middle School Principal. Fred Lamkey later would call the victim to his office and she would recount the contents letter. After which, Fred Lamkey asked her to retrieve the letter from the teacher but it had disappeared. The teacher and assistant coach was told never to have contact with the victim again, and the lawsuit says that the teacher left the district a short time after “in part due to this incident.” The lawsuit says that Fred Lamkey did not report the incident to Bill Lamkey at the high school, nor to DCFS, and no further investigation was alleged to have been conducted. The Lamkeys are brothers.

The eleven Count lawsuit accuses all of the defendants of willful and wanton conduct, negligence, and intentionally inflicting emotional distress to the victim. It further says that the defendants failed to follow established policies and procedures and committed a breach of fiduciary duties. The suit specifically accuses Price with alleged assault and battery of the victim. Under Illinois law, public teachers and public school employees are considered mandatory reporters of neglect and abuse of juveniles pursuant to the Abused and Neglected Child Reporting Act. If public school employees are found to have failed to report abuse or neglect, they may be subject to a misdemeanor for one violation and up to a Class 4 felony for two or more subsequent violations as well as further penalties to their teaching license and certification.

The victim is seeking $550,000 plus court costs, expenses, fees, and interest. Summons have been issued in the case, but Sangamon County Judge Ryan Cadigan has yet to set a court date.

Price worked for the Riverton School District in various capacities for 21 years between May 1995-May 2016 including serving as an 8th Grade Boys Basketball Coach, Girls High School Basketball Head Coach, Boys Basketball Head Coach, and an Assistant Varsity Football Coach along with serving as a High School Social Studies Teacher. Price was Dean of Students at Riverton High School his final 8 years in the district.

Price joined Turner Jr. High (now Jacksonville Middle School) in June 2016 as an Assistant Principal. Price was a student teacher at Jacksonville High School and shadowed at Turner while he was studying at Illinois College from 1990-1995. According to a Journal Courier article in 2016, while at Turner, Price’s main work was with 7th Grade students. Price left the position at Turner Jr. High after July 2018 to take a position as a Jr. High Social Studies teacher at Carrollton Grade School.

Price was dismissed from Carrollton Grade School pursuant to the end of the year by the Carrollton School Board in March 2021 after he was arrested by Greene County Sheriff’s Deputies on February 12, 2021 for two counts of violating an order of protection of a juvenile. Price later went on to resign from the district on March 25, 2021 from the district. According to a March 31, 2021 Greene Prairie Press article, Greene County State’s Attorney Caleb Briscoe was awaiting a report from Greene County Sheriff Rob McMillen to see if further charges were warranted in the Greene County case. To date, no further charges have been filed.

Price’s counsel requested a change of venue in his Greene County case due to conflicts of interest last month. Price is due to appear in Macoupin County Court in front of sitting Macoupin County Judge Kenneth Diehl on Wednesday, January 12th.