Project for Alternative Learning (copy)

Project for Alternative Learning, at the Front Street Learning Center. 

The city of Helena is denying many of the allegations in a lawsuit filed by a teacher who said she suffered "serious permanent hearing loss" during an active-shooter training in 2016. 

Lynn Trenary and her husband, Greg Trenary, both teachers with Helena Public Schools, participated in the training on or about June 10, 2016, at the Project for Alternative Learning. The exercise was meant to train teachers how to respond to a school shooting. 

The complaint says Lynn Trenary was 20 feet away from an officer shooting blank ammunition while playing the role of an active shooter. It says she believed the officer was giving instructions and was trying to understand what he was saying when he came in "cussing, then firing his handgun."

The complaint said Lynn Trenary immediately experienced hearing loss and numbness in her left ear, as well as a loud ringing in her ears.

A brief filed by the city acknowledges that a Helena police officer fired the blanks, but says that both Lynn and Greg Trenary were warned to cover their ears with their hands before the shots were fired.

The brief goes on to say that the Helena Police Department was not negligent and in fact followed "all applicable standards of care." The city also states it is possible Trenary's hearing loss could have come from a prior incident not affiliated with the active shooter training on June 10, 2016.

The plaintiff is asking for a jury trial, general and special compensatory damages for tinnitus, costs and any other relief decided by the court.

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Crime and Health Reporter

Crime and health reporter for the Helena Independent Record.

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