Who is Deputy Chief Matthew Thomas Bateman?
Former Folcroft Deputy Fire Chief Matthew Thomas Bateman was charged on multiple counts of child sexual assault. Investigators alleged that the 28-year-old Bateman sexually assaulted a 15-year-old member of the department’s junior firefighter division. The numerous assaults were inside the firehouse last summer.
Bateman admitted to kissing and assaulting the boy yet has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial.
Recently, Thomas Weber, Sr., the Chief of the Folcroft Fire Department, was also charged with endangering the welfare of children and obstruction of justice by the Delaware County District Attorney’s Office. Weber’s bail is $200,000. While the Folcroft Fire Department no longer lists Weber as a Fire Chief, he is still an active member on their webpage.
What we know about child sexual offenders is that there is a high likelihood that more victims have yet to disclose, especially when there is alleged knowledge and active coverups by the institutions that employ and protect predators. We understand how hard it is to accept the reality of being sexually abused and how scary the system can feel.
You are not alone.
Andreozzi + Foote is experienced and offers a trauma-informed approach when seeking justice for our clients.
How Can A Civil Lawsuit Help Victims Seek Justice For The Trauma They Experienced?
There are many misunderstandings about why a survivor of sexual abuse would choose to file a civil lawsuit. Child sexual abuse takes away so much from the survivors and families impacted. Our society still struggles to find ways to repair the harm done by individual perpetrators and institutions that have covered up child sexual abuse. Outdated statutes of limitations across our country leave far too many survivors denied access to our criminal or civil justice courts.
Filing a civil case can be an essential step for survivors and their families in their journey to slowly rebuild their lives and create pathways to healing. Motivation for filing a civil suit is often questioned and unfairly stereotyped as being “all about money. Filing a civil lawsuit can cast survivors as “money hungry” and is weaponized to shame and blame them even more. This couldn’t be further from the truth for survivors of child sexual abuse. The civil justice system offers victims more than just monetary benefits. It gives survivors access to justice, validation, exposure, confrontation, and ultimately some resolution. The resolution allows survivors of sexual abuse to understand and process what happened. So they can create a new path forward without confusion, questions, and fear.
Can I pursue a case against Folcroft Fire Department, Chief Thomas, and Deputy Chief Bateman?
Yes. You would have rights if you were a victim while the Fire Department employed him if they had prior knowledge or failed to act on their duty of care for children.
The skilled lawyers of Andreozzi + Foote have experience working with the law in Pennsylvania. Don’t hesitate to contact us today to discuss your possible legal rights.
We know it can be hard to talk about these experiences. Our compassionate sexual abuse lawyers are here to listen and provide knowledgeable legal guidance. We provide free, confidential case evaluations.
Contact us 24 Hours A Day, 7 Days a week.