Fighting for Survivors Abused at Northwestern Academy

Northwestern Academy was a private juvenile detention center in Pennsylvania. It served as a correctional facility for young offenders placed there through the juvenile justice system. Due to numerous Northwestern Academy scandals and and allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct by the staff, the detention center was closed in 2016.

Now, a growing number of survivors are stepping forward to file civil lawsuits to hold Northwestern Academy operators accountable for the physical and sexual abuse they experienced while in their custody and for allegedly covering up the abuse. 

If you or someone you love were sexually abused at Northwestern Academy, Pennsylvania, attorneys at Levy Konigsberg want to help. Our team has extensive experience litigating sexual abuse lawsuits on behalf of survivors and knows how to help survivors fight back.

FREE Consultations for Victims of Pennsylvania Youth Residential Treatment and Juvenile Detention Sexual Abuse

Contact us today at (445) 545-2267 or email to discuss your case with our experienced legal team.

History of Sexual Abuse in Northwestern Academy 

The problematic history of sexual abuse at the Northwestern Academy has been documented by high-profile legal filings, criminal indictments, and sweeping investigations. The facility faced multiple lawsuits detailing systemic abuse that included physical, mental, and sexual abuse of the children in their care. 

As lawsuits are filed, it’s becoming clear that the responsible parties, which include the private contractors, created an environment where abuse can thrive. The allegations uncovered during these various investigations showed that the facility was grossly negligent in allowing regular sexual and physical abuse of inmates to occur for many years with little or no oversight. Examples of sexual abuse in Northwestern Academy include the following :

  • In 2024, Levy Konigsberg Attorneys filed a lawsuit on behalf of twelve survivors of sexual abuse by Northwestern Academy staff members. According to the lawsuit, even though Northwestern Academy had only been in business for around eighteen years, there had been several recorded and publicized incidences of sexual assault committed by facility employees. These well-known cases of abuse began immediately after the facility’s opening and continued until its closure in 2016.
  • In January 2015, Aimee Bailey admitted to sexually abusing a 17-year-old male inmate at Northwestern Academy in 2013. Bailey, who now goes by her maiden name, Goepfert, was working as a food service worker at the Academy for subcontractor Litton’s Management Service when she had sexual contact with the adolescent participating in the Academy’s prep program. The adolescent informed authorities that he met Bailey in September 2013 after being assigned to work in the kitchen, where she became his supervisor.
  • In 2003, a former inmate at Northwestern Academy sued the juvenile detention center and two of its employees. She claimed she was sexually assaulted by one of its employees, the defendant Christopher Ross, and that Susan Marie Alberti, the program director, covered up the incident. She was 15 at the time of the abuse. 

Northwestern Academy and Alberti filed a motion to dismiss the claim, but the presiding judge denied it. 

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 legal action if:

  • You were sexually abused by a guard, counselor, nurse, or other youth residential treatment or  juvenile detention center staff member.
  • The abuse occurred at any youth residential treatment or juvenile detention facility.

Levy Konigsberg represents survivors in civil lawsuits that aim to hold youth residential treatment facilities,  juvenile detention centers, private healthcare companies, and other facility operators accountable for their failures to stop abusive staff members and protect young residents.

As civil claims, these 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 with or convicted of a crime.

Recoverable Damages in Sexual Abuse Claims

In addition to providing accountability and a sense of justice, civil sex abuse lawsuits allow survivors to recover financial 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

Pennsylvania Sexual Abuse Statute of Limitations & Pending Law

In the Pennsylvania juvenile justice system, the current statute of limitations for civil sex abuse claims is the age of adulthood plus 37 years, which means that survivors sexually abused as minors typically have until the age of 55 to file legal action, as long as they were born after November 26, 1989.

As in other states across the country, Pennsylvania’s current statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse claims has been criticized for barring numerous survivors from seeking justice and compensation for their damages and for failing to recognize accepted research about the considerable difficulties survivors face when processing their abuse and taking steps to come forward. Thanks to new efforts by advocates and lawmakers, however, there are now several pending measures before the Pennsylvania Legislature that seek to expand the rights of child sex abuse survivors.

These groundbreaking measures, which are expected to pass, will create new opportunities for survivors to step forward and obtain long-overdue justice. If passed, these measures would create a temporary two-year window for child sexual abuse survivors to file claims over abuse that occurred at any time in the past.

Levy Konigsberg is closely tracking the proposed sexual abuse measures in Pennsylvania youth residential treatment facilities and juvenile detention centers and is actively working with survivors looking for information about filing claims under the new extended statute of limitations or two-year lookback window, should these measures become law.

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 Pennsylvania Youth Residential Treatment and Juvenile Detention Sexual Abuse

Contact us today at (445) 545-2267 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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