Fighting for Survivors Abused at Green Hill School

Green Hill School in Washington is a juvenile rehabilitation facility located in Chehalis, Washington. It provides schooling, therapy, and job training to young males who have been convicted by the state justice system for committing offenses.

However, for many years, Green Hill School has had a deep-seated culture of sexual abuse and cover-ups. Criminal charges and civil complaints reveal that guards and staff members frequently engaged in sexually inappropriate relationships with underage residents. Lawsuits claim that the school knew of rampant sexual abuse but failed to adequately supervise their staff and protect the children. 

If you or someone you love was sexually abused as a youth inmate in Green Hill School, Levy Konigsberg wants to help you seek justice even if the abuse occurred many years or even decades ago.

FREE Consultations for Victims of Washington Juvenile Detention Sexual Abuse

Contact us today at (206) 289-9979 or email to discuss your case with our experienced legal team.

History of Sexual Abuse in Green Hill School

Green Hill School has a troubling history of abuse, which has been highlighted by major lawsuits, public settlements, and investigations. News reports and records show widespread sexual abuse  at the juvenile rehabilitation center. They also reveal that the school administration, including the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, and other responsible entities allowed a culture of secrecy and cover-ups. This lack of proper oversight lets sexual predators have unchecked, unsupervised access to vulnerable children at Green Hill for years. Some examples of sexual abuse include:

  • In September 2021, Washington state agreed to pay over $2 million to settle a lawsuit with 10 survivors of sexual abuse at Green Hill School in Chehalis. The survivors, who were between 14 and 18 years old at the time of the abuse, endured ongoing abuse from staff and guards who misused their authority over them.

Despite reporting the abuse, the survivors allegedly faced retaliation and had no way to escape or get help. This abuse spanned from the 1970s to the early 2000s. The lawsuit claimed that the School authorities and the state DSHS allowed a culture of abuse and cover-ups, leading to repeated mistreatment of many residents over the years.

  • In a 2018 lawsuit, a former inmate at Green Hill School, identified as O-H, claimed he was sexually assaulted repeatedly by counselors Katherine Kimbrel and Erin Stiebritz from 2013 to 2015. He alleged that the state’s DSHS protected the abusers and that his attempts to report the abuse were obstructed by the school’s officials.  O-H claimed he also witnessed staff assaulting other residents.

Kimbrel, who allegedly groomed and abused O-H, faced multiple charges and pleaded not guilty. In November 2019, Kimbrel agreed to a plea deal for reduced charges. 

Stiebritz was previously convicted and received counseling and a two-week jail sentence for abusing another inmate. In March 2018, she was charged for allegedly failing to register as a sex offender.

  • In June 2018, Samantha N. Washington, 31, a former Green Hill School employee, was sentenced for charges related to a sexually explicit phone conversation with an inmate in July 2017. 

  • In 2016, a female counselor at Green Hill School was arrested for allegedly having a sexual relationship with a male resident. Her charging records suggest that she might have been pregnant as a result of the relationship.

  • In 2009, Deanna Witters, a 52-year-old former cook at the juvenile facility, admitted to a sexually inappropriate relationship with an inmate and pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree custodial sexual misconduct. During the investigation, Witters revealed widespread sexual misconduct at the facility, implicating at least five other employees.

We specialize in sexual abuse lawsuits against powerful institutions, including prisons, clergy, and juvenile detention centers.

We work on contingency, which means there’s no cost to hire and no fee unless we win.

Do I Have a Case

You may have grounds to file a civil lawsuit if:

  • You were sexually abused by a guard, counselor, or other Green Hill School staff member.
  • The abuse occurred at the juvenile rehabilitation facility. 

Levy Konigsberg represents survivors in civil lawsuits that aim to hold Green Hill School operators and state authorities accountable for their failures to stop abusive staff members and protect young inmates.

These civil cases are separate from any criminal proceedings that may arise from abuse and focus instead on holding institutions liable for damages. This means you may still have a claim even if:

  • Your abuser is no longer alive.
  • Your abuser was never charged or convicted of a crime.

Recoverable Damages in Sexual Abuse Claims

Civil lawsuits cannot remove the trauma and effects of sexual abuse. However, in addition to providing accountability and a sense of justice, civil sex abuse lawsuits allow survivors to recover sexual abuse compensation for their damages, which may include:

  • Past medical and mental health expenses
  • Future mental health expenses, including therapy, medications, etc.
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional anguish and psychological harm
  • Lost income
  • Other economic and non-economic damages

Washington New Statute of Limitations for Child Sexual Abuse Lawsuits

Under current Washington state law, survivors of sexual abuse have three years from the date of their abuse, or three years from the date they discover the connection between their injuries (which can include addiction, self-harm, and other mental health issues) and the abuse (or a defendant’s actions that led to the abuse), to file civil lawsuits.

In March 2024, the governor signed into law a bill (House Bill 1618) removing the statute of limitations for civil claims related to child sexual abuse. As a result, for any sexual abuse occurring on or after June 6, 2024, there is no deadline to file.

However, the new law is not retroactive, meaning that it does not apply to sexual abuse that occurred before June 6, 2024. Survivors of sexual abuse that occurred before this time still have three years from the date of their abuse, or three years from the date they discover the connection between their injuries and the abuse or actions that led to the abuse, to file civil lawsuits. 

The Levy Konigsberg legal team can assist you in determining whether your claim meets the requirements under the statute of limitations for cases involving child sexual abuse.

Trust Levy Konigsberg's Legal Team for Proven Results in Sexual Abuse and Negligence Cases

Levy Konigsberg LLP, a nationally recognized law firm, has built a legacy over three decades, recovering over $3 billion in sexual abuse compensation for clients. Led by award-winning sexual abuse lawyers, we specialize in representing survivors in sexual abuse across the country, taking on powerful institutions. Our top-rated trial practice handles all types of sexual abuse or negligence cases, showcasing numerous testimonials and successful case results. You can learn more about our latest sexual abuse work on our blog.

FREE Consultations for Victims of Washington Juvenile Detention Sexual Abuse

Contact us today at (206) 289-9979 or email to discuss your case with our experienced legal team.


Find out whether you have a case by speaking to one of our experienced lawyers via our 24/7 toll-free hotline or by submitting an email inquiry. Our attorneys will be quick to respond to you and happy to answer all of your questions.


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