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Parents sue Armstrong district for failing to protect daughter

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Wednesday, Nov. 21, 2012, 3:26 p.m.

The parents of a Kittanning High School student claim in a federal civil rights lawsuit filed Wednesday that the Armstrong County School District failed to protect her from a former girls tennis coach convicted of groping her during practice.

The parents and daughter are only identified by initials in the lawsuit. They are suing the district and the coach, Dennis Lee Zellefrow, 64, of Kittanning, who pleaded guilty in September 2011 to corruption of minors and indecent assault.

Al Lindsay, one of the lawyers representing them, said the district violated the daughter's 14th Amendment right to bodily integrity.

Butler County Common Pleas Judge William Shaffer sentenced Zellefrow in October 2011 to up to three months in jail, four years and nine months of probation and fined him $750, according to court records.

Zellefrow and a spokesman for the district couldn't immediately be reached for comment.

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