CLIFTON PARK: Parents file suits against teacher

No monetary amount is specified in the legal papers, but the legal papers state they are seeking damages in excess of what lower courts could order.

The civil case will not be part of the upcoming criminal trial.

"Our case is completely separate, and as such, I can't comment on this," said Saratoga County Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Jensen, who represented the families at the arraignment last month.

Albany attorney Arthur J. Siegel, who is representing the two families, said he anticipates more of the eight families will come forward to seek damages in Culver's alleged actions.

"My understanding is that other parents will bring suits with their private attorneys," said Siegel. "There may come a time when they all become consolidated."

The civil case is not yet on a court calendar.

"There is no automatic date from when papers are filed, and there will be a period of discovery and deposition," said Siegel. "My expectation is nothing will happen until the criminal case is concluded."

Siegel also said the parents will move forward with their personal lawsuits regardless of the outcome of Culver's criminal trial.

"A civil case is based on standards of a preponderance of evidence," said Siegel. "The criminal case is based on the standards of reasonable doubt."

Culver's residence has changed from Colina Lane, where he lived with his wife, to Chestertown, where he now resides with his father, Robert Culver. Culver was ordered by the courts not to change his address again without the court's permission.

Culver's father posted $50,000 bail for his son's release on Feb. 13. The courts denied a request by the Saratoga County District Attorney's office that bail be raised to $100,000.

It is expected there will be a lengthy discovery period for prosecutors and defense attorneys to file pre-trial motions, and no dates have been set for Culver's next appearance in court on the criminal charges.""

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