Pennsylvania Junior Program Sexual Assault Case Settled

A lawsuit that alleged a 13-year old girl was sexually assaulted by a fire lieutenant while participating in the department’s junior program has been settled. The family of the victim, who was identified in the pleadings as T.S., filed the suit last year naming Lieutenant Joshua James Ralston and the Trucksville Volunteer Fire Department as defendants.

The suit alleged the department violated its own rules by allowing the underaged victim to join, and then failing to properly supervise Ralston. Ralston pled guilty to two felony counts of statutory sexual assault. He was sentenced to 11 months to 23 months to serve in prison followed by 2 years of probation. Ralston, who is now 21, was 19 at the time of the assaults.

The fire department paid $35,000 to settle the case. More on the story.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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