The 16-year-old girl who accused a former Highland Park baseball star of rape is now countersuing him in civil court.
In March, after a grand jury declined to indict Ryan Romo on rape charges, the Romo family sued his accuser and her family, claiming, among other things, defamation and negligent supervision of the girl. The girl and her family denied those charges in a brief filing late last week. And today, a new countersuit from the family says that Romo did in fact rape the girl, and alleges that the District Attorney's office allowed only a "one-sided presentation" that didn't allow them to show evidence proving that she had been assaulted.
The new countersuit was first reported by CultureMap , which also notes that the family is being represented by Charla Aldous, who also represented the family of the student involved in the Episcopal School of Dallas statutory rape case.
Unlike the Romos' lawsuit, which used the girl's parents' real names and referred to the girl herself by the initials S.W., this answer was filed using pseudonyms. The girl is referred to throughout as Jane Doe.
The countersuit decries the allegations made by Romo and his family in their original suit, which was filled with explicit details about the girl's purported sexual history and the nature of her family life. The girl's family calls the suit "retribution" for reporting her rape, and says the allegations were designed to "embarrass and cause distress."
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According to the suit, the District Attorney's office allowed the girl to testify against Romo during the grand jury hearing, but didn't allow her to submit any other evidence. A gynecologist, who examined the girl, and who according to the suit would have testified that there were "objective signs of forcible entry consistent with rape," was also not called. The girl saw the gynecologist after she'd already been examined by a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner; the nurse referred the girl to the gynecologist, according to the suit, "due to the severity of her injury."
After the grand jury declined to indict Romo, the suit says, the family decided it wasn't in the girl's best interest to pursue any legal recourse. Instead, they decided to "move on and focus on emotionally healing the broken 16-year-old girl and to try to return to normalcy."
The Romos' lawsuit "has been a re-victimization of Jane Doe and has plunged the family back into crisis," the countersuit says. "Now this family, who never asked for this to happen to Jane, must defend themselves from heinous allegations designed to embarrass all of them."
The family is suing Romo for assault, and accusing his family of "intentional infliction of emotional distress," adding, "The conduct of Ryan Romo in assaulting Jane Doe and then the Romos disparaging her is extreme and outrageous and goes beyond all possible bounds of decency." They're asking for various damages, court costs and a jury trial.