The Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Blog

Son of Leesport Mayor Hemdal Sues School over Sex Tape

Here's the story of a sex tape gone wrong and the lawsuit that came from it.

The son of Leesport mayor Niklas Hemdal is suing his Schuylkill Valley school for suspending him after he complained that a sex-tape showing him and his girlfriend had been distributed, reports The Associated Press.

Anders Hemdal, 16, claims that the school didn't do enough to stop the tape from circulating. Rather, they punished him for the violation of school policy, namely, for the fact that the tape depicted him having sex while on a school trip to Morocco last April.

Hemdal was suspended for four days, writes the New York Daily News.

He is now seeking over $75,000 in damages, claiming invasion of privacy, violation of due process and emotional distress. Hemdal also wants the suspension removed from his academic record.

The student who made the video was also suspended, as was Hemdal's girlfriend. The student behind the video is also facing criminal charges. As we've discussed in another blog, sexting, namely the transmission of nude photos or videos via mobile phones, will soon be illegal in the state of Pennsylvania.

A lawsuit like this could go far, given the recent story of Tyler Clementi. Given Clementi's case, the potential for emotional distress is much higher and schools have become more aware of the potential dangers involving invasion of privacy issues.

Indeed, after Clementi's suicide as the aftermath of having his sexual activities recorded on video, schools are now taking such concerns more seriously.

As a result, the school may be prompted into settling faster, as the damages could be much higher at trial, if there is a trial by jury.

To date, the school's representatives told AP that they have not seen the lawsuit. There is no word on how the school plans to respond to the lawsuit. There is also no word on whether Anders Hemdal also plans to sue the student who made the video.

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