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Victim’s negligence cited as defense in NH youth abuse case

File photo-This Jan. 28, 2020, photo shows the Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester.
File photo-This Jan. 28, 2020, photo shows the Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester.(Charles Krupa | AP)
Published: Jul. 12, 2021 at 9:33 AM EDT
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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - Attorneys representing New Hampshire’s state-run youth detention center are suggesting that a man who claims he was physically and sexually assaulted there as a teen was partially responsible for at least some of the alleged abuse.

David Meehan sued the Sununu Youth Services Center last year alleging that he endured near-daily beatings and rapes in the late 1990s.

More than 300 men and women have since come forward with similar allegations spanning six decades.

The attorney general’s office responded to the lawsuit Friday, citing Meehan’s “contributory negligence” as a defense. It also said some of his claims are barred because the staff’s actions were necessary to maintain order.

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