Victim of HS Football Peanut Hazing Incident Sues Lake Travis School District for $1.5M


Carter Mannon (identified as C.M.), a high school football player who has asthma and a severe peanut allergy, was the victim of a hazing incident last fall that could have ended his life. He is now suing the Lake Travis Independent School District (LTISD).

The complaint lists the following rationale for the suit:

C.M., a former student and football player at Lake Travis High School, endured persistent disability-based harassment, bullying, and assaults from teammates due to his life-threatening peanut allergies, with one perpetrator even referring to the actions as “attempted murder.” Despite C.M.’s efforts to seek help from school authorities, LTISD was deliberately indifferent to the ongoing bullying, failing to intervene or provide accommodations, properly supervise students, and staff, or enforce disciplinary measures mandated by state law for students committing assault. This failure to address the ongoing bullying not only violated C.M.’s rights but also endangered his life. Despite attempts to involve school officials, the harassment continued, leading C.M. to transfer to another district for his safety. LTISD’s action and inaction created a hostile environment and exacerbated the situation, demonstrating deliberate discrimination against C.M. and causing him harm.

Although prior reporting laid bare some of the facts, the complaint describes not only the hazing incident but also an earlier incident where Carter was exposed to an allergen.

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Incident during 2022-2023 School Year

Carter — whose food allergies include peanuts, tree nuts, and shellfish — purchased a cookie from the school cafeteria which was supposed to screen for nuts.

After he ate the cookie, his airway immediately began constricting, a sign of anaphylaxis. He was able to reach the nurse’s office where he was administered epinephrine. En route to the hospital via ambulance, he was administered another dose by EMTs. He was released later that day but was physically impacted for several days after.

Following the episode, the school never inquired about Carter’s well-being, discussed measures to prevent future life-threatening incidents, or initiated a 504 evaluation.

Hazing Incident During Fall 2023

Prior to the 2023-24 school year, Carter’s physician updated his food allergy emergency action plan detailing his food allergies and asthma which was presented to the high school administration prior to the beginning of the school year. The school district failed again to initiate a section 504 review.

On October 5, 2023, Carter and several of his teammates were discussing where to stop for dinner after school. In answer to a suggested venue, Carter stated that he could not eat there because of his severe peanut allergy.

Two students — identified as Student G and Student B in the complaint — asked him about the severity of his peanut allergy and whether specific actions could potentially kill him, such as whether throwing peanuts on him, pouring them in his locker, or placing them in his uniform could prove fatal. He candidly replied that any of these actions could result in his death and that he always carried his epinephrine auto-injector as a precaution.

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Within minutes of the conversation, both Students G and B returned to the high school locker room. Student G took a can of peanuts from another teammate’s locker and emptied the contents over Carter’s uniform and inside his cleats, then spread the remainder about his locker for maximum exposure while Student B recorded the incident on his phone.

The following morning, Student B attempted to clean out the peanut from the locker but the damage had already been done.

That day, the team gathered at the high school to prepare for the game. During this time,
Student G threw peanuts at Carter who fortunately managed to avoid the assault and proceeded toward his locker. On his way there, he witnessed Student B showing his phone to other teammates, laughing, and mentioning something about what they had done to Carter. Although Carter was not yet aware of the specifics, he discovered peanuts strewn about the floor and spread on his uniform and in his cleats, which triggered hives that lasted several days.

Despite the students’ deliberate actions in carrying out and recording the assault, neither faced any disciplinary consequences for their premeditated and life-threatening attacks against Carter.

The following day, Carter’s parent raised concerns with the LTHS head football coach, Hank Carter, regarding the life-threatening bullying by his teammates. However, she received no substantial response from the coach apart from assurances that he would “handle the situation”. The coach was not a school administrator and did not have the authority to implement disciplinary consequences such as suspension or removal to a Disciplinary Alternative Education Program.

Failing to find a resolution, on October 11, 2023, Carter’s mother met with Assistant Principal Surdy, who stated that any disciplinary actions would be handled by Coach Carter.

The complaint alleges the school district failed to implement its own policies regarding bullying as well as ignored Texas Education and Penal Codes.

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In light of the school district’s failure to act, Student G continued to boast about what he referred to as his “attempted murder” of Carter. He had escalated his threatening verbal assaults against him, boasting that he is a “killer” who would prevail against any charges brought against him by Carter or his family.

On October 27, 2023, Carter’s mother sent a text message to Coach Carter detailing
how Student G constantly taunted him and boasted about being untouchable, even daring Carter to press charges. Student G also expressed a desire to harm Carter during practice and bragged about being a “killer” both on and off the field. Despite these concerns raised by Carter’s mother, no disciplinary action was taken against the perpetrators as required by the school districts policy and state law. Additionally, LTISD failed to implement any measures to prevent further bullying.

On October 30, 2023, another student placed a peanut butter granola bar in Carter’s backpack, further endangering him due to his peanut allergy.

Carter was also repeatedly removed from the team’s group chat. Coach Carter addressed the incidents vaguely, referring to them as “the shit going around our community” and suggesting the team should just “let it die.” During Coach Carter’s speech, Student G directed threatening gestures toward Carter by shaking his head. However, no action was taken by LTISD to prevent further bullying, and Student G faced no consequences for his behavior.

The Aftermath

Finally, following the mother’s address to the school board, the board initiated an investigation.

On March 4, 2024, Assistant Principal Sandy Surdy provided the Mannon’s with the report. despite not taking interim action to prevent bullying during the investigation.

The report fell well short of LTISD’s policy standards for appropriateness.

The complaint alleges that Surdy did little more than counsel Student G on the school’s code of conduct and direct him to stay away from Carter, which was impossible as they were both on the same team and attended the same class together.

As the incident gained media attention, several individuals addressed the LTISD Board of Trustees with some implying that Carter and his mother were lying about the incident. A number of football players told the board that they never observed any bullying of Carter.

Since then, Carter was forced to change schools and has continued to be cyberbullied. The complaint gives numerous examples.

Remedies Sought

The complaint demands a jury trial and seeks a minimum of $1.5 million in compensation plus legal fees and seeks the school district:

  • modify its programs and activities so that it stops engaging in unconstitutional and unlawful acts and to develop policies and procedures for ending any such unconstitutional and unlawful acts and the hostile and intolerant environment;
  • implement mandatory and effective training programs for the district faculty, staff, and students on issues related to discrimination and methods to intervene to stop students from harassing other students based on disability status; and
  • Adopt policies with specific guidelines for instructing teachers and administrators about how to address complaints by students who have been discriminated against because of their disability status.

Here is a KVUE-TV report regarding the lawsuit:

We also encourage you to read the entire complaint.

We at continue to be appalled by the actions of the students, their lack of regret following the incident, and the complete inaction on the part of the Lake Travis School District to address what we see as the attempted murder of Carter Mannon.

We hope this lawsuit provides the family significant compensation for their travails and forces the district to make much-needed changes regarding their complete indifference to bullying and harassment.

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Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom is CEO and "Blogger in Chief" of

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  1. You need to hit a lot harder than 1.5 million. They should be accused of attempted murder because that’s exactly what it was. They knew his peanut allergy was deadly and they did it anyway. Two pieces of garbage

  2. There needs to be criminal charges against the assailants as well. I’m tired of these kids getting away with attempted murder. The reason they do this is because they know nothing will happen, once we start prosecuting them things will change.

  3. I’m glad to hear Student G (the attempted murderer) had his college acceptance rescinded but it is not enough. A 2 game suspension? He could have ended this boy’s life and Student B should be held in just as much account. My son was threatened by a classmate when he was in 2nd grade – the boy took a carton of milk and shoved it in my son’s face and yelled “Milllllkkkkk” and on other occasions breathed hard in my son’s face and yelled, “I just drank millllkkkkk.” My son, who at the time was just 8 years old, said, “he is trying to kill me.” Yes, that is exactly what it was and that is exactly what these young men were trying to do to Mr. Mannon. I hope people wake up and I agree with the other poster who said they should hit a lot harder then $1.5M. And for those parents to stand up there and accuse the kid and his mom of lying, shame on them!

  4. Wow…this makes me so sad. Forget disciplinary charges…criminal charges should be filed…for sure. As someone who has severe allergies to peanuts, tree nuts and seeds, it can’t be stressed enough how serious food allergies can be. Food allergies can be fatal. Anyone who disregards this, should be punished criminally. Period!!!

  5. I don’t understand at all why this is a school issue. It’s clearly an attempted murder. The police should be investigating, and students G and B should be prosecuted. The school should enact its own disciplinary procedures as well, of course. But, first and foremost, this is a crime. The situation is similar to a sexual assault on a college campus. Those crimes used to be handled internally at the institutional level. But they are clearly crimes that should be prosecuted outside of the institutional context.

  6. Student G is a football player and just signed to play for USC after UT Austin pulled their offer.
    Shame on USC for recruiting this player.

  7. I wrote the school board about the lack of action taken. It would be a good idea to have people write to USC as well about the decision to take this player. I hope the family wins every penny on this lawsuit. Not sure what other support we as the food allergy community can offer at this time. I just hope the family knows that by not letting this slide they are helping others that come after them.


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